Sentiment and Social Mitosis: Implications of Heider's Balance Theory
AbstractTwo Monte Carlo simulations were developed to investigate the social consequences of balancing sentiment relations among triads of members of a larger group, when balancing one triad can imbalance others. Using assumptions of Balance Theory (Heider, 1958), random starting combinations of liking, disliking and no relations among 9 or16 people were iteratively adjusted to determine if the relations ever settled to a steady state and what subgroups might emerge. Results show that, regardless of the starting configuration of sentiments, all imbalances in a group are eventually balanced in a steady state containing no more than two subgroups. Two subgroups are the rule; their relative size depends on the starting number of positive, negative and null relations. Members within each subgroup are linked by positive relations (liking), and show only negative relations (disliking) towards members of the other subgroup, a form of social mitosis. A second simulation demonstrates that a starting configuration containing only positive and negative relations (no null relations) will completely determine who will eventually belong to which of the two groups. As null relations become more plentiful in the starting configuration, the order or historical trajectory of restoring balance among triads also contributes to subgroup membership.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoArticle provided by Journal of Artificial Societies and Social Simulation in its journal Journal of Artificial Societies and Social Simulation.
Volume (Year): 6 (2003)
Issue (Month): 3 ()
Contact details of provider:
Sentiment and social mitosis; Balance theory; Sentimental relations; Triad;
You can help add them by filling out this form.
reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.Access and download statisticsgeneral information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Nigel Gilbert).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.