The new science of complex networks emphasises the importance of both the static and the dynamic in social systems. Such systems are in a perpetual state of change; however, patterns can and do emerge in such systems, which persist for a period of time. Since the Enlightenment, social scientists have focused on identifying persist patterns, and conditions under equilibrium. Complex networks help us to appreciate that society, while exhibiting structure, is often far from equilibrium.
Photograph © Edwin Halliday (www.flickr.com/photos/e01/2334039881/)