I am, apparently, ahead of my time.
There's a great little article on the chapter at Wired, but the essence is that the authors adapted the classic SIR model from epidemiology for zombies. For those who don't know, "S" stands for susceptible, "I" stands for infectious, and "R" stands for recovered- where recovered can mean either "recovered from the illness and now immune" or "dead." In any case, the authors of this chapter converted SIR into SZR- Susceptible, Zombie, and Recovered. And as we all know, there isn't any "recovering" from zombification, so that R stands for "Really big bullet to the brain."
So what's the prognosis for a potential zombie uprising? Eh. Not good:
“Only sufficiently frequent attacks, with increasing force, will result in eradication, assuming the available resources can be mustered in time,” they concluded.
“If the timescale of the outbreak increases, then the result is the doomsday scenario: an outbreak of zombies will result in the collapse of civilization, with every human infected, or dead,” they wrote. “This is because human births and deaths will provide the undead with a limitless supply of new bodies to infect, resurrect and convert.”
How fast do we need to deal with the outbreak? If an infection breaks out in a city of 500,000 people, the zombies will outnumber the susceptibles in about three days.
All I can say is, between the threat of a zombie apocalypse and the new respectability of zombie studies, it's a good thing I keep the Zombie Survival Guide in the methods section of my office bookshelf. Nevertheless, this makes me wonder: how long until we have a "Zombies and Society" section-in-formation at the ASAs?
Best. Paper. Sessions. EVAR!