Dear friends

Usually we publish our ideas in scientific journals, but considering the impact of the terrorist attacks on innocent citizens on our society, the attack on Paris as the most recent gruesome act, I think that we, being scientists addressing the dynamics of society, have a responsibility to address the general public more directly. A polarisation of society, resulting in conflict, seems to be the aim of these fear-inducing attacks. The more society at large is aware of this likely aim, the more a liberal and tolerant culture might be resilient to such attacks.

I propose publishing a statement on behalf of our scientific community. The following tekst is a sightly adapted post I made on Facebook. It might serve as a start for a joint message, which should have tolerance and openness as key values for a global culture to strive for.

A flourishing global culture requires tolerance and the embracing of diversity as important principles. The IS attacks on innocent citizens appear to be aimed at undermining this tolerant culture by fuelling a polarisation process, setting up groups of people against each other. Rather than responding with violence, leading to a spiralling down to a repressive state, as scientists we believe that we should support critical thinking in areas dominated by dogmatic and repressive powers. We prefer drones offering internet access over drones packed with with explosives. Better a bombardment with laptops than with rockets. Mind that lead is better used for printing than for bullets!

 If you support this message just let me know, and if you have some suggestions for improving the tekst and for bringing this message out your input is valued very much.

I hope to share a final tekst on Monday, which I want to circulate on this list.

Warm regards from concerned citizen.

Wander Jager

Groningen Center for Social Complexity Studies
University College Groningen
Phone +31 (0)6 361 84 622

Twitter: @GCSCS_RuG
Facebook: Groningen Center for Social Complexity Studies