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Structural holes and densely connected communities

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Abstract

It has been empirically shown that structural holes in social networks enable potential large benefits to those individuals who bridge them (Burt, 2004). The pioneering paper Goyal and Vega-Redondo (2007) offers a new incentives based explanation of this phenomenon. But the main equilibrium network of their model does not display a basic empirical regularity: the architecture of social networks is characterized by the existence of densely linked communities loosely connected to one another (Granovetter, 1983). This paper analyzes the conditions under which agents who benefit from bridging structural holes can be sustained in equilibrium networks constituted by densely linked groups.

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Paper provided by Universitat de les Illes Balears, Departament d'Economía Aplicada in its series DEA Working Papers with number 32.

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Date of creation: 2008
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Handle: RePEc:ubi:deawps:32

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Keywords: network formation; personal income distribution; structural holes; communities;

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  1. Matthew O. Jackson, 2001. "Strongly Stable Networks," University of Oregon Economics Department Working Papers 2001-3, University of Oregon Economics Department, revised 15 Nov 2002.
  2. Andrea Galeotti & Sanjeev Goyal, 2002. "Network Formation with Heterogeneous Players," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 02-069/1, Tinbergen Institute.
  3. Dutta, Bhaskar & Mutuswami, Suresh, 1996. "Stable Networks," Working Papers 971, California Institute of Technology, Division of the Humanities and Social Sciences.
  4. Goyal, S. & Joshi, S., 1999. "Bilateralism and free trade," Econometric Institute Research Papers EI 9953-/A, Erasmus University Rotterdam, Erasmus School of Economics (ESE), Econometric Institute.
  5. Charness, Gary & Corominas-Bosch, Margarida & Frechette, Guillaume R., 2007. "Bargaining and network structure: An experiment," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 136(1), pages 28-65, September.
  6. Sanjeev Goyal & Sumit Joshi, 2006. "Unequal connections," International Journal of Game Theory, Springer, vol. 34(3), pages 319-349, October.
  7. Goyal, Sanjeev & Vega-Redondo, Fernando, 2007. "Structural holes in social networks," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 137(1), pages 460-492, November.
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