AProf Markus Luczak-Roesch

AProf Markus Luczak-Roesch profile picture

Honours and MCom Programme Director School of Information Management


Teaching in 2020

Research interests

Information dynamics, complex systems, data science, information networks, human factors in computing


I am an Associate Professor within the School of Information Management at Victoria University of Wellington and an Associate Investigator at Te Pūnaha Matatini—New Zealand's centre for research excellence (CoRE) on complex systems. I am leading the Complexity & Connection Science Lab that brings together students and researchers to work on theories and methods to understand the structures and dynamics of complex systems, and to develop computational tools that securely and meaningfully augment human intelligence.

My curiosity is around the mathematics of change and in particular of change that is a result of rare coincidences. Change happens everywhere and all the time - in biological systems in social systems, in the economy, even in very basic every day situations. Sometimes we have the ability to anticipate or predict change, because we understand well the likelihood of the underlying events happening individually and them happening in a particular orchestration. But then there are events that are rare and have potentially never happened together with particular other events. Yet they change the overall system significantly and persistently. This property of most so-called complex systems is also known as emergence. So I ask questions like: What are the unifying mathematical properties of emergence? Does emergence happen similarly across different systems we can find in our world? Can we improve resilience and response to changes when we gain a better formal understanding of emergence?

My enthusiasm for this line of work originates from the early days of my computer science PhD research, where I investigated RDF data repositories that evolve aligned with the emergent changes in how people use (i.e. query) them. Today the systems in which I study emergence range from social systems (e.g. online communities and social movements), to biological systems (e.g. bacteria and brain activities), to cultural artefacts (e.g. language, literature, human personality), to numerical systems (e.g. prime numbers), to weather (e.g. climate change).

A complete list of my publications can be found on Google Scholar. I also maintain a profile on Research Gate and am active on Twitter. I am also active in communicating contemporary issues of science and technology to the general public and provide regular media commentary.

Selected media engagement and news

Current PhD students

I am always open to inquiries (by email) for PhD supervision but I kindly ask people to engage with my work first and elaborate how they see their own research interested to be aligned with it. Students who want to take up research assistant jobs that allow them to do programming in R, python and Matlab are also encouraged to get in touch.

Selected publications

Doyle, C., & Luczak-Roesch, M. (2020, January). This paper is an artefact: On open science practices in design science research using registered reports. In Proceedings of the 53rd Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences.

Luczak, M. You Can’t See What You Can’t See: Experimental Evidence for How Much Relevant Information May Be Missed Due to Google’s Web Search Personalisation. In Social Informatics: 11th International Conference, SocInfo 2019, Doha, Qatar, November 18–21, 2019, Proceedings (p. 253). Springer Nature.

Dietrich, J., Luczak-Roesch, M., & Dalefield, E. (2019, May). Man vs machine: a study into language identification of stack overflow code snippets. In Proceedings of the 16th International Conference on Mining Software Repositories (pp. 205-209). IEEE Press.

Luczak-Roesch, M. (2019). When Coincidence has Meaning: Understanding Emergence Through Networks of Information Token Recurrence. arXiv preprint arXiv:1911.07642.

Luczak-Roesch, M., O’Hara, K., Dinneen, J. D., & Tinati, R. (2018). What an entangled Web we weave: An information-centric approach to time-evolving socio-technical systems. Minds and Machines, 28(4), 709-733.

Luczak-Roesch, M., Grener, A., & Fenton, E. (2018). Not-so-distant reading: A dynamic network approach to literature. it-Information Technology60(1), 29-40.

Tinati, R., Luczak-Roesch, M., & Hall, W. (2016, April). Finding structure in wikipedia edit activity: An information cascade approach. In Proceedings of the 25th international conference companion on world wide web (pp. 1007-1012). International World Wide Web Conferences Steering Committee.

Luczak-Roesch, M., Tinati, R., Van Kleek, M., & Shadbolt, N. (2015, August). From coincidence to purposeful flow? properties of transcendental information cascades. In 2015 IEEE/ACM International Conference on Advances in Social Networks Analysis and Mining (ASONAM) (pp. 633-638). IEEE.

Complete list of publications on Google Scholar


Teaching in 2020