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Hans Liljenström

Hans Liljenström
Professor in Biometry: Theoretical Biology and Biophysics; Director of Agora for Biosystems


I'm a professor in Biometry, with focus on theoretical biology and biophysics. At SLU I'm primarily teaching systems analysis and mathematics, but I'm also teaching at various Cemus courses and doctoral courses at Uppsala University. In addition, I'm the director of Agora for Biosystems, an international research center at the Sigtuna Foundation. My work has so far resulted in some 150 publications in various international journals, conference proceedings, and books. 


Systems Analysis for Sustainable Development, TN0268 (master course), 5 hp

System- och livscykelanalys, MX0132, 15 hp

Systemanalys med energitillämpningar (master course), TN0343, 5 hp

Systems Analysis, Model Building and Simulation, PNS0025 (PhD course), 6hp


My research includes mathematical modeling of biological systems and processes at different levels, in particular network dynamics and more specifically mesoscopic neurodynamics. Recent work includes neurocognitive models of decision making, with relevance to societal transition processes. I'm also interested in the human nature and human-nature interaction. 

Recent research projects are the EU-funded project COMPLEX - Knowledge Based Climate Mitigation Systems for a Low Carbon Economy 2012-16, and Neurophilosophy of Free Will, funded by the John Templeton Foundation and the Fetzer Franklin Fund. 



I have throughout the years been involved in interdiscipinary research, primarily between physics, mathematics and biology, but also between natural and social sciences, as well as with various disciplines in the humanities. I have organized a large number of symposia, primarily at the Sigtuna Foundation, on the dialogue between science and the humanities, focusing on world views and philosophy of life.

Main collaborating partners are currently: 

Emotion Lab at the Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden

Institute for Interdisciplinary Brain and Behavioral Sciences, Chapman University, Irvine, California

The Sigtuna Foundation, Sigtuna, Sweden


I was born in 1956 in Eskilstuna, Sweden, and moved to Stockholm for studies on Engineering Physics at the Royal Institute of Technology (KTH), where I received an MSc degree in 1982,  and a PhD in Theoretical Biophysics (with Prof. Clas Blomberg as supervisor) in 1987. My doctoral thesis was "On the Efficiency of A Biological System - Theoretical Modelling of Protein Synthesis". I spent a postdoc period with Prof. John Hopfield at Caltech, 1989-90, developing computational models of the olfactory cortex. In the 1990' I worked as an assistant professor at the Dept of Numerical Analysis and Computing Sciences (NADA), KTH, and later as an associate professor in Theoretical Biophysics at KTH.  I became a professor in Biometry at the Dept. of Biometry and Informatics, SLU, Uppsala, Sweden.


Huayi Lin on systems analysis of socio-natural systems

Azadeh Hassannejad Nazir on neural network theory combined with social cognition

Nils Jonsson on biosystems engineering

Selected publications

Liljenström H. (2018) Modeling effects of neural fluctuations and inter-scale interactions. Chaos, 28(10):106319. doi: 10.1063/1.5044510.

Svedin, U., and Liljenström, H. [2018] Energy Policy Paths to Low Carbon Societies by 2050 – The energy system and its regional socio-ecological context. A Swedish case. Energy Policy (manuscript).

Liljenström, H. [2018] Intentionality as a Driving Force. J. Consc. Studies, 25 (1-2):206-229

Svedin, U., Borgström, S. and Liljenström, H. [2017] Connecting urban and regional socio-ecological transitions: Paths to a non-fossil society in the Swedish Stockholm-Mälar area. Procedia Engineering 198C (2017) pp. 1036-1045,

Svedin, U., and Liljenström, H. [2017] A Multilevel Approach to Urban Regional Agglomerations –  a Swedish Case of Transition Paths Towards a “Fossil-free Society” by 2050. In: Urban Agglomeration, InTechOpen (in press), ISBN 978-953-51-5884-4.

Svedin, U. and Liljenström, H. [2016] Paths to a low carbon society by 2050 – The Stockholm-Mälar case. In: Deliberation, Representation and Equity – Research Approaches, Tools and Algorithms for Participatory Processes, (Ekenberg, L. et al., eds). pp. 198-205. Open Book Publishers. ISBN: 978-1-78374-304-9, doi: 10.11647/OBP.0108

Liljenström, H. [2016] Multi-scale causation in brain dynamics. In: “Cognitive Phase Transitions in the Cerebral Cortex - Enhancing the Neuron Doctrine by Modeling Neural Fields” (Kozma, R. and Freeman, W. J, eds.), pp. 177-186. Springer. ISBN 978-3-319-24406-8, doi: 10.1007/978-3-319-24406-8

Hassanejad Nazir, A. and Liljenström, H. [2015] A Cortical Network Model for Cognitive and Emotional Influences in Human Decision Making. BioSystems 136: 128-141. doi:10.1016/j.biosystems.2015.07.004

Liljenström, H. [2012] Mesoscopic Brain Dynamics. Scholarpedia 7(9):4601

Liljenström, H. [2011] Mesoscopic Brain Dynamics and Mental Disorders. European Psychiatry 26:2225-2225

Liljenström, H. [2011] Intention and Attention in Consciousness Dynamics and Evolution. J. Cosmology 14:4848-4858  

Liljenström H. [2010] Network Effects of Synaptic Modifications. Pharmacopsychiatry 43: S67 – S81.


Professor at the Department of Energy and Technology; Applied statistics and mathematics
Telephone: +4618671728
Postal address:
Inst för Energi och Teknik
Box 7032
75007 Uppsala
Visiting address: Lennart Hjelms väg 9, Uppsala

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