Prof. Dr. Dirk Brockmann

Prof. Dr. Dirk Brockmann


Humboldt University of Berlin
Philippstraße 13, 10115 Berlin

Robert Koch Institute
Nordufer 20, 13353 Berlin
+49 (0) 30 18754 20 70

Northwestern Institute on Complex Systems

Dirk Brockmann is Professor at the Institute of Biology at Humboldt-University of Berlin. Between 2007-2013 he was Professor for Applied Mathematics at Northwestern University. At Northwestern University he was on the faculty of Northwestern’s Institute on Complex Systems where he still holds an external faculty position.

A theoretical physicist by training, his research focuses on complex systems at the interface of physics, life sciences and social sciences. He is particularly interested the application of dynamicals systems theory, stochastic processes and network science to infectious disease dynamics and related contagion processes. In this context he is currently investigating dynamical processes on time-dependent networks, complex contagion processes and the emergence of cooperation in evolutionary processes. He is known for his work on human mobility and its role on the global spread of infectious diseases.

Dirk Brockmann is member of the Institute of Theoretical Biology as well as the Integrated Research Institute for the Life-Sciences at Humboldt University of Berlin.

He is also head of the project group Computational Epidemiology at the Robert Koch-Institute, Germany’s federal public health institute.

In 2017 he launched the project Complexity Explorables, a collection of interactive illustration on complex systems that continously expands in examples and is designed for teachers, instructors and people that want to gain an intuitive unterstanding of the beauty of complex dynamical processes in nature.

Selected Publications

Social networks predict the life and death of honey bees.

Nature Communications 12, 1110 (2021).

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Saving human lives: What complexity science and information systems can contribute.

Journal of statistical physics, 158 (3), 735–781 (2015).

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The scaling laws of human travel.

Nature 439 (7075), p. 462-465 (2006).

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Forecast and control of epidemics in a globalized world.

Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 101 (42), 15124-15129 (2004).

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All publications (google scholar)

Mini CV

Professional Experience & Education

Aug 2013 – Present Berlin
Professor, Head of Project Group Computational Epidemiology
Aug 2013 – Present Berlin
Associate Professor
Aug 2009 – Jul 2013 Evanston, USA
Associate Professor for Applied Mathematics
Aug 2008 – Jul 2013 Evanston, USA
Postdoctoral Researcher
Aug 2003 – Jul 2008 Göttingen
PhD (Dr. rer. nat.) Theoretical Physics
Jan 1996 – Jul 2003 Göttingen
Studies of Theoretical Physics and Mathematics
Aug 1990 – Aug 1995 Göttingen
Undergraduate Studies
Aug 1988 – Aug 1990 Durham, NC, USA