Settlements, scale and socio-economic stress


  • John W. Hanson (University of Colorado)
  • Matthew Mandich (ISAR)
  • Katherine Crawford (University of Southampton)

Within urban studies there has been a marked concern in the last few years with the overall viability and sustainability of urbanism and its implications for congestion, resource exploitation, and ecological disruption. At the same time, urban scholars have taken an interest in the effects of urban life on human behaviour, including the composition of social networks, the openness and willingness of individuals to cooperate or compete with strangers, degrees of specialisation / diversification, and wider patterns of consumption and production. Having said this, there has been little discussion in Roman studies of what formal models can be used to link settlement, scale, and the various stresses engendered both within the urban environment and the wider landscape by the process of agglomeration and nucleation. We invite contributions that cover a wide range of aspects related to human scale related stress, from theoretical work on scale, agent-based modelling, network analysis, and cognitive and behavioural psychology to empirical work such as studies of supply and demand, the management of resources, social networks, and transport and trade, as well as the wider influence of cities, towns, and villages on forms of socio-economic organisation.

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