IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/eee/dyncon/v52y2015icp240-257.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

Opinion dynamics and wisdom under conformity

Author

Listed:
  • Buechel, Berno
  • Hellmann, Tim
  • Klößner, Stefan

Abstract

We study a dynamic model of opinion formation in social networks. In our model, boundedly rational agents update opinions by averaging over their neighbors’ expressed opinions, but may misrepresent their own opinion by conforming or counter-conforming with their neighbors. We show that an agent׳s social influence on the long-run group opinion is increasing in network centrality and decreasing in conformity. Concerning efficiency of information aggregation or “wisdom” of the society, it turns out that misrepresentation of opinions need not undermine wisdom, but may even enhance it. Given the network, we provide the optimal distribution of conformity levels in the society and show which agents should be more conforming in order to increase wisdom.

Suggested Citation

  • Buechel, Berno & Hellmann, Tim & Klößner, Stefan, 2015. "Opinion dynamics and wisdom under conformity," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 52(C), pages 240-257.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:dyncon:v:52:y:2015:i:c:p:240-257
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jedc.2014.12.006
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0165188914003315
    Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

    File URL: https://libkey.io/10.1016/j.jedc.2014.12.006?utm_source=ideas
    LibKey link: if access is restricted and if your library uses this service, LibKey will redirect you to where you can use your library subscription to access this item
    ---><---

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version below or search for a different version of it.

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Jeanne Hagenbach & Frédéric Koessler, 2010. "Strategic Communication Networks," The Review of Economic Studies, Review of Economic Studies Ltd, vol. 77(3), pages 1072-1099.
    2. Michel Grabisch & Agnieszka Rusinowska, 2010. "A model of influence in a social network," Theory and Decision, Springer, vol. 69(1), pages 69-96, July.
    3. Venkatesh Bala & Sanjeev Goyal, 1998. "Learning from Neighbours," The Review of Economic Studies, Review of Economic Studies Ltd, vol. 65(3), pages 595-621.
    4. Fã–Rster, Manuel & Mauleon, Ana & Vannetelbosch, Vincent J., 2016. "Trust and manipulation in social networks," Network Science, Cambridge University Press, vol. 4(2), pages 216-243, June.
    5. Rosenberg, Dinah & Solan, Eilon & Vieille, Nicolas, 2009. "Informational externalities and emergence of consensus," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 66(2), pages 979-994, July.
    6. Grabisch, Michel & Rusinowska, Agnieszka, 2011. "Influence functions, followers and command games," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 72(1), pages 123-138, May.
    7. Ariely, Dan & Levav, Jonathan, 2000. "Sequential Choice in Group Settings: Taking the Road Less Traveled and Less Enjoyed," Journal of Consumer Research, Journal of Consumer Research Inc., vol. 27(3), pages 279-290, December.
    8. Luca Anderlini & Dino Gerardi & Roger Lagunoff, 2012. "Communication and Learning," The Review of Economic Studies, Review of Economic Studies Ltd, vol. 79(2), pages 419-450.
    9. Zafar, Basit, 2011. "An experimental investigation of why individuals conform," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 55(6), pages 774-798, August.
    10. Daron Acemoglu & Munther A. Dahleh & Ilan Lobel & Asuman Ozdaglar, 2011. "Bayesian Learning in Social Networks," The Review of Economic Studies, Review of Economic Studies Ltd, vol. 78(4), pages 1201-1236.
    11. Jadbabaie, Ali & Molavi, Pooya & Sandroni, Alvaro & Tahbaz-Salehi, Alireza, 2012. "Non-Bayesian social learning," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 76(1), pages 210-225.
    12. Bikhchandani, Sushil & Hirshleifer, David & Welch, Ivo, 1992. "A Theory of Fads, Fashion, Custom, and Cultural Change in Informational Cascades," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 100(5), pages 992-1026, October.
    13. Bernheim, B Douglas, 1994. "A Theory of Conformity," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 102(5), pages 841-877, October.
    14. Lones Smith & Peter Sorensen, 2000. "Pathological Outcomes of Observational Learning," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 68(2), pages 371-398, March.
    15. Rainer Hegselmann & Ulrich Krause, 2002. "Opinion Dynamics and Bounded Confidence Models, Analysis and Simulation," Journal of Artificial Societies and Social Simulation, Journal of Artificial Societies and Social Simulation, vol. 5(3), pages 1-2.
    16. Daron Acemoglu & Asuman Ozdaglar, 2011. "Opinion Dynamics and Learning in Social Networks," Dynamic Games and Applications, Springer, vol. 1(1), pages 3-49, March.
    17. Andrea Galeotti & Sanjeev Goyal, 2009. "Influencing the influencers: a theory of strategic diffusion," RAND Journal of Economics, RAND Corporation, vol. 40(3), pages 509-532, September.
    18. Pan, Zhengzheng, 2010. "Trust, influence, and convergence of behavior in social networks," Mathematical Social Sciences, Elsevier, vol. 60(1), pages 69-78, July.
    19. Peter M. DeMarzo & Dimitri Vayanos & Jeffrey Zwiebel, 2003. "Persuasion Bias, Social Influence, and Unidimensional Opinions," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, President and Fellows of Harvard College, vol. 118(3), pages 909-968.
    20. Goyal, Sanjeev & Galeotti, Andrea, 2007. "A Theory of Strategic Diffusion," Coalition Theory Network Working Papers 9096, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei (FEEM).
    21. Pietro Battiston & Luca Stanca, 2014. "Boundedly Rational Opinion Dynamics in Directed Social Networks: Theory and Experimental Evidence," Working Papers 267, University of Milano-Bicocca, Department of Economics, revised Jan 2014.
    22. Lorenz, Jan, 2005. "A stabilization theorem for dynamics of continuous opinions," Physica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications, Elsevier, vol. 355(1), pages 217-223.
    23. Glenn Ellison & Drew Fudenberg, 1995. "Word-of-Mouth Communication and Social Learning," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, President and Fellows of Harvard College, vol. 110(1), pages 93-125.
    24. Emily Breza & Arun G. Chandrasekhar & Horacio Larreguy, 2014. "Social Structure and Institutional Design: Evidence from a Lab Experiment in the Field," NBER Working Papers 20309, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    25. Gale, Douglas & Kariv, Shachar, 2003. "Bayesian learning in social networks," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 45(2), pages 329-346, November.
    26. Mueller-Frank, Manuel, 2014. "Does one Bayesian make a difference?," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 154(C), pages 423-452.
    27. Corazzini, Luca & Pavesi, Filippo & Petrovich, Beatrice & Stanca, Luca, 2012. "Influential listeners: An experiment on persuasion bias in social networks," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 56(6), pages 1276-1288.
    28. Merlone, U. & Radi, D., 2014. "Reaching consensus on rumors," Physica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications, Elsevier, vol. 406(C), pages 260-271.
    29. Ellison, Glenn & Fudenberg, Drew, 1993. "Rules of Thumb for Social Learning," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 101(4), pages 612-643, August.
    30. Buechel, Berno & Hellmann, Tim & Pichler, Michael M., 2014. "The dynamics of continuous cultural traits in social networks," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 154(C), pages 274-309.
    31. Abhijit V. Banerjee, 1992. "A Simple Model of Herd Behavior," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, President and Fellows of Harvard College, vol. 107(3), pages 797-817.
    32. Acemoglu, Daron & Ozdaglar, Asuman & ParandehGheibi, Ali, 2010. "Spread of (mis)information in social networks," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 70(2), pages 194-227, November.
    33. Rajiv Sethi & Muhamet Yildiz, 2013. "Perspectives, Opinions, and Information Flows," Levine's Working Paper Archive 786969000000000934, David K. Levine.
    34. , & , M. & ,, 2013. "Hierarchical cheap talk," Theoretical Economics, Econometric Society, vol. 8(1), January.
    35. ,, 2013. "A general framework for rational learning in social networks," Theoretical Economics, Econometric Society, vol. 8(1), January.
    36. Rajiv Sethi & Muhamet Yildiz, 2012. "Public Disagreement," American Economic Journal: Microeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 4(3), pages 57-95, August.
    37. Hayakawa, Hiroaki & Venieris, Yiannis P, 1977. "Consumer Interdependence via Reference Groups," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 85(3), pages 599-615, June.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Michel Grabisch & Agnieszka Rusinowska, 2020. "A Survey on Nonstrategic Models of Opinion Dynamics," Games, MDPI, vol. 11(4), pages 1-29, December.
    2. Michel Grabisch & Antoine Mandel & Agnieszka Rusinowska & Emily Tanimura, 2015. "Strategic influence in social networks," Université Paris1 Panthéon-Sorbonne (Post-Print and Working Papers) hal-01158168, HAL.
    3. Ding, Huihui & Pivato, Marcus, 2021. "Deliberation and epistemic democracy," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 185(C), pages 138-167.
    4. Grabisch, Michel & Rusinowska, Agnieszka, 2013. "A model of influence based on aggregation functions," Mathematical Social Sciences, Elsevier, vol. 66(3), pages 316-330.
    5. Battiston, Pietro & Stanca, Luca, 2015. "Boundedly rational opinion dynamics in social networks: Does indegree matter?," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 119(C), pages 400-421.
    6. Syngjoo Choi & Edoardo Gallo & Shachar Kariv, 2015. "Networks in the laboratory," Cambridge Working Papers in Economics 1551, Faculty of Economics, University of Cambridge.
    7. Azzimonti, Marina & Fernandes, Marcos, 2023. "Social media networks, fake news, and polarization," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 76(C).
    8. Azomahou, T. & Opolot, D., 2014. "Beliefs dynamics in communication networks," MERIT Working Papers 2014-034, United Nations University - Maastricht Economic and Social Research Institute on Innovation and Technology (MERIT).
    9. Jadbabaie, Ali & Molavi, Pooya & Sandroni, Alvaro & Tahbaz-Salehi, Alireza, 2012. "Non-Bayesian social learning," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 76(1), pages 210-225.
    10. Rusinowska, Agnieszka & Taalaibekova, Akylai, 2019. "Opinion formation and targeting when persuaders have extreme and centrist opinions," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 84(C), pages 9-27.
    11. , & ,, 2015. "Information diffusion in networks through social learning," Theoretical Economics, Econometric Society, vol. 10(3), September.
    12. Michel Grabisch & Antoine Mandel & Agnieszka Rusinowska & Emily Tanimura, 2018. "Strategic Influence in Social Networks," Mathematics of Operations Research, INFORMS, vol. 43(1), pages 29-50, February.
    13. Li, Wei & Tan, Xu, 2021. "Cognitively-constrained learning from neighbors," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 129(C), pages 32-54.
    14. Daron Acemoglu & Asuman Ozdaglar, 2011. "Opinion Dynamics and Learning in Social Networks," Dynamic Games and Applications, Springer, vol. 1(1), pages 3-49, March.
    15. Foerster, Manuel, 2018. "Finite languages, persuasion bias, and opinion fluctuations," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 149(C), pages 46-57.
    16. Jan Hązła & Ali Jadbabaie & Elchanan Mossel & M. Amin Rahimian, 2021. "Bayesian Decision Making in Groups is Hard," Operations Research, INFORMS, vol. 69(2), pages 632-654, March.
    17. Pooya Molavi & Ceyhun Eksin & Alejandro Ribeiro & Ali Jadbabaie, 2016. "Learning to Coordinate in Social Networks," Operations Research, INFORMS, vol. 64(3), pages 605-621, June.
    18. Jakob Grazzini & Domenico Massaro, 2021. "Dispersed information, social networks, and aggregate behavior," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 59(3), pages 1129-1148, July.
    19. Catherine A. Glass & David H. Glass, 2021. "Social Influence of Competing Groups and Leaders in Opinion Dynamics," Computational Economics, Springer;Society for Computational Economics, vol. 58(3), pages 799-823, October.
    20. Mueller-Frank, Manuel & Arieliy, Itai, 2015. "A General Model of Boundedly Rational Observational Learning: Theory and Experiment," IESE Research Papers D/1120, IESE Business School.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Opinion leadership; Wisdom of crowds; Consensus; Social networks; Conformity; Eigenvector centrality;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • C72 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Game Theory and Bargaining Theory - - - Noncooperative Games
    • D83 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Search; Learning; Information and Knowledge; Communication; Belief; Unawareness
    • D85 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Network Formation
    • Z13 - Other Special Topics - - Cultural Economics - - - Economic Sociology; Economic Anthropology; Language; Social and Economic Stratification

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:dyncon:v:52:y:2015:i:c:p:240-257. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a bibliographic reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: Catherine Liu (email available below). General contact details of provider: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/jedc .

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service. RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.