Two classes of functional connectivity in dynamical processes in networks

Venetia Voutsa, Demian Battaglia, Louise J. Bracken, Andrea Brovelli, Julia Costescu, Mario Díaz Muñoz, Brian D. Fath, Andrea Funk, Mel Guirro, Thomas Hein, Christian Kerschner, Christian Kimmich, Vinicius Lima, Arnaud Messé, Anthony J. Parsons, John Perez, Ronald Pöppl, Christina Prell, Sonia Recinos, Yanhua ShiShubham Tiwari, Laura Turnbull, John Wainwright, Harald Waxenecker, Marc Thorsten Hütt*

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalReview articleAcademicpeer-review

    3 Citations (Scopus)
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    The relationship between network structure and dynamics is one of the most extensively investigated problems in the theory of complex systems of recent years. Understanding this relationship is of relevance to a range of disciplines - from neuroscience to geomorphology. A major strategy of investigating this relationship is the quantitative comparison of a representation of network architecture (structural connectivity, SC) with a (network) representation of the dynamics (functional connectivity, FC). Here, we show that one can distinguish two classes of functional connectivity - one based on simultaneous activity (co-activity) of nodes, the other based on sequential activity of nodes. We delineate these two classes in different categories of dynamical processes - excitations, regular and chaotic oscillators - and provide examples for SC/FC correlations of both classes in each of these models. We expand the theoretical view of the SC/FC relationships, with conceptual instances of the SC and the two classes of FC for various application scenarios in geomorphology, ecology, systems biology, neuroscience and socio-ecological systems. Seeing the organisation of dynamical processes in a network either as governed by co-activity or by sequential activity allows us to bring some order in the myriad of observations relating structure and function of complex networks.

    Original languageEnglish
    Article number20210486
    Number of pages26
    JournalJournal of the Royal Society Interface
    Issue number183
    Publication statusPublished - 1-Oct-2021


    • chaotic oscillators
    • excitable dynamics
    • modular graphs
    • random graphs
    • scale-free graphs
    • synchronisation

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