Research topics

  • Computational social science
  • Complex systems
  • Complex networks and social network analysis, big data
  • Science studies, sociology of science, scientometrics
  • Innovation studies

On a PhD thesis in sociology

  • Provisional title: The epistemic impact of artificial intelligence in scientific research: diffusion models and transformation of scientific work,
  • Supervision: Floriana Gargiulo, Michel Dubois and Paola Tubaro,
  • Attached doctoral school: Concepts and Language (ED433),
  • Funding: PhD grant within the framework of the Mission for Transversal and Interdisciplinary Initiatives of the CNRS (EpiAI 2021-2024 project).


  • Gargiulo, F., Fontaine, S., Dubois, M., Tubaro, P. (2022) A meso-scale cartography of  the AI ecosystem. Submitted. Avaliable preprint at
  • Mullick, P., Fontaine, S., Appert-Rolland, C., Olivier, A.-H., Warren, W. H., Pettré, J. (2022). Analysis of emergent patterns in crossing flows of pedestrians reveals an invariant of ‘stripe’ formation in human data. PLOS Computational Biology.
  • Schawe, H., Fontaine, S., Hernández, L. (2021). When network bridges foster consensus. Bounded confidence models in networked societies. Phys. Rev. Research 3, 023208.


  • October 2022 : SCAI PhD Workshop on Artificial Intelligence at Sorbonne University. Title: “The spreading of artificial intelligence in science: The neuroscience case”,
  • June 2022 : French Regional Conference on Complex Systems at Île-de-France Complex Systems Institute:
    • “Flash talk” (5min) about “The spreading of artificial intelligence in science: The neuroscience case”,
    • 15 minutes talk about “Meso-scale composition & interdisciplinary diffusion of Artificial Intelligence” (with F. Gargiulo et P. Tubaro),
  • May 2022: “Flash talk” (4min) at the thematic school Complex Networks: Theory, Methods, and Applications organized by the Lake Como School of Advanced Studies of the Fondazione Alessandro Volta (Como, Italy). Title: “A scientometric study of the diffusion of AI technologies in science: The neuroscience case”,
  • March 2022: short talk for the “Sociology of sciences and techniques” lectures in the last year of the master degree of Contemporary Sociology (Research track) at Sorbonne University. Title: “Artificial intelligence, a socio-technical system”.

Teaching activities

  • January to May 2022: “Applied Social Networks” course in the first year of the master degree of Contemporary Sociology at Sorbonne University (theoretical introduction to social network analysis and tutorials on Gephi and Python + organization of a small talks session with researchers)

Other activities in the lab


  • 2020-2021: Last year of the master degree of Contemporary Sociology at Sorbonne University,
  • 2017-2020: Bachelor and Master degrees of Fundamental Physics within the “Magistère” track of Paris-Saclay University. Specialty of the master degree: Physics of Complex Systems,
  • 2015-2017: University preparatory class “Reinforced Scientific Studies” (intensive track), University of Nantes.

Recent publications by Sylvain FONTAINE

A meso-scale cartography of the AI ecosystem

Floriana GARGIULO, Sylvain FONTAINE, Michel DUBOIS, A meso-scale cartography of the AI ecosystem, Avec Paola TUBARO, arXiv, [Submitted on 23 Dec 2022], 2023