Search and Homophily in Social Networks
AbstractWe study the formation of social ties among heteogeneous agents in a model where meetings are governed by agents' directed search. The aim is to shed light on the important issue of homophily (the tendency of agents to connect with others of the same type). The essential contribution of the model is to provide a basic microfoundation for the opportunity/meeting biases that, as the literature highlights, are a crucial element of the phenomenon. Under the assumption that search is more effective in large pools, the equilibrium is characterized by a threshold in terms of group size: large groups only search among similar agents while smaller groups search in the whole population. This threshold behavior is consistent with the empirical evidence observed in a range of social environments such as high school friendships and interethnic marriages. And assuming that search is subject to small frictions, it also generates the bell-shaped form of the so-called Coleman index observed in the data. Other implications of the model supported by the evidence concern the pattern of cross-group ties among small groups, the linearity of excess homophily for large groups, and the positive effect on it of overall population size.
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 InfoPaper provided by Department of Economics, University of Venice "Ca' Foscari" in its series Working Papers with number 2010_24.
Date of creation: 2010
Date of revision:
Contact details of provider:
Postal: Cannaregio, S. Giobbe no 873 , 30121 Venezia
Web page: http://www.unive.it/dip.economia
More information through EDIRC
Homophily; search; social networks; segregation.;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- D7 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making
- D71 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Social Choice; Clubs; Committees; Associations
- D85 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Network Formation
- Z13 - Other Special Topics - - Cultural Economics - - - Economic Sociology; Economic Anthropology; Social and Economic Stratification
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2011-01-30 (All new papers)
- NEP-GTH-2011-01-30 (Game Theory)
- NEP-SOC-2011-01-30 (Social Norms & Social Capital)
- NEP-URE-2011-01-30 (Urban & Real Estate Economics)
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Sebastian Buhai & Marco van der Leij, 2006.
"A Social Network Analysis of Occupational Segregation,"
Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers, Tinbergen Institute
06-016/1, Tinbergen Institute, revised 08 Nov 2006.
- Buhai, Sebastian & van der Leij, Marco, 2006. "A Social Network Analysis of Occupational Segregation," Working Papers, University of Aarhus, Aarhus School of Business, Department of Economics 06-11, University of Aarhus, Aarhus School of Business, Department of Economics.
- Marco J. van der Leij & I. Sebastian Buhai, 2008. "A Social Network Analysis of Occupational Segregation," Working Papers, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei 2008.31, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.
- Marco van der Leij & Sebastian Buhai, 2010. "A Social Network Analysis of Occupational Segregation," 2010 Meeting Papers, Society for Economic Dynamics 554, Society for Economic Dynamics.
- Sergio Currarini & Matthew O. Jackson & Paolo Pin, 2009.
"An Economic Model of Friendship: Homophily, Minorities, and Segregation,"
Econometrica, Econometric Society,
Econometric Society, vol. 77(4), pages 1003-1045, 07.
- Sergio Currarini & Paolo Pin & Matthew O. Jackson, 2007. "An Economic Model of Friendship: Homophily, Minorities and Segregation," Working Papers, Department of Economics, University of Venice "Ca' Foscari" 2007_20, Department of Economics, University of Venice "Ca' Foscari".
- Abigail Barr & Marleen Dekker & Marcel Fafchamps, 2009.
"Bridging the gender divide: an experimental analysis of group formation in African villages,"
ASC Working Papers, African Studies Centre (ASC), Leiden, The Netherlands
87, African Studies Centre (ASC), Leiden, The Netherlands.
- Barr, Abigail & Dekker, Marleen & Fafchamps, Marcel, 2012. "Bridging the Gender Divide: An Experimental Analysis of Group Formation in African Villages," World Development, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 40(10), pages 2063-2077.
- Abigail Barr & Marcel Fafchamps, 2009. "Bridging the gender divide: An experimental analysis of group formation in African villages," Economics Series Working Papers, University of Oxford, Department of Economics CSAE WPS/2009-17, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
- Abigail Barr & Marleen Dekker & Marcel Fafchamps, 2009. "Bridging the gender divide: An experimental analysis of group formation in African villages," CSAE Working Paper Series 2009-17, Centre for the Study of African Economies, University of Oxford.
- Avinash Dixit, 2003. "Trade Expansion and Contract Enforcement," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, University of Chicago Press, vol. 111(6), pages 1293-1317, December.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Geraldine Ludbrook).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.