Multistability with a Metastable Mixed State
Complex dynamical systems often show multiple metastable states. In macroevolution, such behavior is suggested by punctuated equilibrium and discrete geological epochs. In molecular biology, bistability is found in epigenetics and in the many mutually exclusive states that a human cell can take. Sociopolitical systems can be single-party regimes or a pluralism of balancing political fractions. To introduce multistability, we suggest a model system of D mutually exclusive microstates that battle for dominance in a large system. Assuming one common intermediate state, we obtain D+1 metastable macrostates for the system, one of which is a self-reinforced mixture of all D+1 microstates. Robustness of this metastable mixed state increases with diversity D.