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Evolution of groups with a hierarchical structure


  • Ohnishi, Teruaki


The universal occurrence of a hierarchical structure and its dynamic behavior in various types of group, living or abstract, are discussed. Here the word “group” refers not only to tangible aggregation but also to invisible aggregation of social psychological and of geopolitical meaning. The evolution of these groups is simulated using a model of agents distributed on the lattices of cellular grids. It is assumed that agents, fearing isolation, interact asymmetrically with each other with regard to exchange of “power”. As an indicator of hierarchy, the Gini coefficient is introduced. Example calculations are made for the aggregation, fusion and fission of animal groups, and for the appearance of a powerful empire and the rise and fall of supremacy. It is shown that such abstract objects evolve with time in accordance with the universal rules of groups common to birds and fish.

Suggested Citation

  • Ohnishi, Teruaki, 2012. "Evolution of groups with a hierarchical structure," Physica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications, Elsevier, vol. 391(23), pages 5978-5986.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:phsmap:v:391:y:2012:i:23:p:5978-5986
    DOI: 10.1016/j.physa.2012.06.023

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Fujie, Ryo & Odagaki, Takashi, 2010. "Self organization of social hierarchy and clusters in a challenging society with free random walks," Physica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications, Elsevier, vol. 389(7), pages 1471-1479.
    2. repec:cup:apsrev:v:99:y:2005:i:02:p:263-281_05 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Zheng, Xiaoping & Li, Wei & Guan, Chao, 2010. "Simulation of evacuation processes in a square with a partition wall using a cellular automaton model for pedestrian dynamics," Physica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications, Elsevier, vol. 389(11), pages 2177-2188.
    4. Tsujiguchi, Masaru & Odagaki, Takashi, 2007. "Self-organizing social hierarchy and villages in a challenging society," Physica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications, Elsevier, vol. 375(1), pages 317-322.
    5. Bonabeau, Eric & Theraulaz, Guy & Deneubourg, Jean-Louis, 1995. "Phase diagram of a model of self-organizing hierarchies," Physica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications, Elsevier, vol. 217(3), pages 373-392.
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