The Rules of Contagion

With uncanny timing, Adam Kucharski, who is a professor at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, has just published a book titled ‘The Rules of Contagion. Why Things Spread – and Why They Stop’. It deals, among other things, with the spread of epidemics, but shows how the science of epidemics applies equally to many other phenomena. As the Sunday Times says:

This is a hell of a moment for a book like this to come out … the principles of contagion, which, Kucharski argues, can be applied to everything from folk stories and financial crises to itching and loneliness, are suddenly of pressing interest to all of us.

The book is written in a way that’s both interesting and accessible, and if you’re at all interested in the mathematical/statistical aspects of the current epidemic, this is a very good place to learn something.

You can currently get the Kindle version at Amazon for less than the price of a coffee.


Incidentally, Adam contacted me a few years ago asking for an interview as he was writing a book about the history of gambling, all the way through to modern-day companies, like Smartodds, that are connected to the gambling industry. After taking advice I declined, so as to avoid any potential disclosure of proprietary information. I did write to Adam though, setting out some of my own thoughts about the industry and the background to my involvement at Smartodds. His book on this subject, ‘The Perfect Bet: Taking the Luck out of Gambling‘ is also a good read.

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