Social Reinforcement: Cascades, Entrapment, and Tipping
AbstractThe actions of different agents sometimes reinforce each other. Examples are network effects and the threshold models used by sociologists as well as (Harvey) Leibenstein's "bandwagon effects." We model such situations as a game with increasing differences, and show that tipping of equilibria, cascading, and clubs with entrapment are natural consequences of this mutual reinforcement. If there are several equilibria, one of which Pareto dominates, then the inefficient equilibria can be tipped to the efficient one, a result of interest in the context of coordination problems. We characterize the smallest tipping set. (JEL C72, D80, D85, Z13)
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Bibliographic InfoArticle provided by American Economic Association in its journal American Economic Journal: Microeconomics.
Volume (Year): 2 (2010)
Issue (Month): 1 (February)
Other versions of this item:
- Geoffrey Heal & Howard Kunreuther, 2007. "Social Reinforcement: Cascades, Entrapment and Tipping," NBER Working Papers 13579, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- C72 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Game Theory and Bargaining Theory - - - Noncooperative Games
- D80 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - General
- D85 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Network Formation
- Z13 - Other Special Topics - - Cultural Economics - - - Economic Sociology; Economic Anthropology; Social and Economic Stratification
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