Biological transportation networks
Transportation networks are fundamental infrastructures of man-made systems: urban streets, aqueducts, supply systems. Transportation networks also play an important role in many natural systems: foraging trails and underground galleries built by animals, vascular systems of plants and animals. In spite of their different origin, transportation networks all share some common features: The principles of organization of biological systems, which can flexibly adapt to unpredicted conditions will possibly serve of inspiration for the building of man made transportation networks. In turn, the logic of organization of man made transportation networks can provide a conceptual frame that will possibly help to elucidate the logic behind biological systems otherwise difficult to characterise.
In 2010 Jean Baptiste Rouquier, Pascale Kuntz and myself organized a quite successful workshop on "Transportation Networks in Nature and Technology" of which a follow-up on a closely related subject was organized in 2011 at Stratchlyde University in Glasgow. The success of the workshop emphasizes the current interest in this topic.