Memetics at Thwink.org

A meme is a mental belief or behavior learned from others. Another definition is a "unit of cultural information." Memetic means of or dealing with memes, just as genetic means of or dealing with genes. Memetics is the study and practical application of the abstraction of memes.

The use of social agent types, meme types, and memetic infection lies at the heart of Thwink.org's approach to modeling the social side of the sustainability problem. We believe there is no better way to understand why the human system behaves the way it does when it comes to political decision making and change resistance to solving the sustainability problem. How memetics has been applied may be seen in the following work:

Simulation models using memetics

Dueling Loops modelThe Dueling Loops of the Political Powerplace paper describes how two types of social agents (corrupt and virtuous politicians) use two main types of memes (false and true memes) to infect potential supporters. Whoever infects the most supporters tends to win the most elections and stay in office the longest. The highlights of the paper are the proposition that the race to the bottom has an inherent structural advantage over the race to the top, and the identification of the low and high leverage points of the system.

For the longer version of the paper, see the Dueling Loops of the Political Powerplace book.

For a deeper look at the Dueling Loops model with additional simulation runs, see the Common Property Rights book.

An article on The Memetic Evolution of Solutions to Difficult Problems uses memes, the evolutionary algorithm, and the scientific method to show how complex solutions evolve over time and how that process can be improved. This work argues that the process must be improved if problem sovers (the environmental movement) are to create a sufficiently correct analysis and solution in time to avoid environmental catastrophe.

Glossary terms related to memetics

See the competitive exclusion principle, dueling loops, meme, more of the truth, and the New Dominant Life Form.