NOTE: This site is now obsolete. Please see my new academic homepage.

I am a postdoctoral research fellow at the Center for the Management of Systemic Risk at Columbia University, funded by a James S. McDonnell Postdoctoral Fellowship in Studying Complex Systems.

In fall 2016, I am joining the Bonds Lab at the Harvard Medical School to do research on poverty, complex systems, and machine learning.

Research interests

I study collective social phenomena and “domino effects”, ranging from how people collaboratively create good ideas to how the financial system undergoes crises to how sudden changes spread (such as protests in the Arab Spring). This work combines mathematical modeling  (often using dynamical systems and networks) with statistics and data science. Lately, I have been studying how contagious disruptions in supply chains might result in poverty traps, and I am collaborating with economists on a randomized controlled trial to assess how virtual social networks can enhance the creation of good business ideas in low-income countries. I’m also working with colleagues at the Harvard Kennedy School on building an “automatic economist” that ingests economic data and that learns how it evolves over time; we’re using data on exports and recent techniques in machine learning for inferring sparse dynamical systems from data.


[email protected]

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Recent publications

For more, please see the publications page.

Charles D. Brummitt, George Barnett, and Raissa M. D’Souza. Coupled catastrophes: sudden shifts cascade and hop among interdependent systems. Journal of The Royal Society Interface, 12(112), November 2015.

Charles D. Brummitt, Shirshendu Chatterjee, Partha S. Dey, and David Sivakoff. Jigsaw percolation: What social networks can collaboratively solve a puzzle? Annals of Applied Probability, 25(4):2013–2038, August 2015.

Charles D. Brummitt, Rajiv Sethi, and Duncan J. Watts. Inside money, procyclical leverage, and banking catastrophesPLoS ONE, 9(8):e104219, August 2014.