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Influential listeners: An experiment on persuasion bias in social networks

Author

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  • Corazzini, Luca
  • Pavesi, Filippo
  • Petrovich, Beatrice
  • Stanca, Luca

Abstract

This paper presents an experimental investigation of persuasion bias, a form of bounded rationality whereby agents communicating through a social network are unable to account for repetitions in the information they receive. We find that, after repeated communication within a social network, social influence depends not only on being listened to by many others, but also on listening to many others. We show that persuasion bias can be viewed as an extreme case of a generalized boundedly rational updating rule in which agents receive more or less attention depending on how many other agents they listen to. The results indicate that behavior in the experiment is consistent with an updating rule according to which agents' social influence is proportional to their indegree.

Suggested Citation

  • 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.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:eecrev:v:56:y:2012:i:6:p:1276-1288
    DOI: 10.1016/j.euroecorev.2012.05.005
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Social networks; Learning; Social influence; Persuasion bias; Bounded rationality;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • D85 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Network Formation
    • D83 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Search; Learning; Information and Knowledge; Communication; Belief; Unawareness
    • A14 - General Economics and Teaching - - General Economics - - - Sociology of Economics
    • L14 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Transactional Relationships; Contracts and Reputation
    • Z13 - Other Special Topics - - Cultural Economics - - - Economic Sociology; Economic Anthropology; Language; Social and Economic Stratification

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