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Opinion Dynamics And Communication Networks



    () (Institute for Complexity Science (ICC), 1649-026 Lisbon, Portugal;
    Faculty of Media, Bauhaus–University Weimar, D-99421 Weimar, Germany;
    Research Unit on Complexity in Economics (UECE), ISEG, TULisbon, 1200-781 Lisbon, Portugal)


    () (Institute for Complexity Science (ICC), 1649-026 Lisbon, Portugal;
    Research Unit on Complexity in Economics (UECE), ISEG, TULisbon, 1200-781 Lisbon, Portugal)


    () (Institute for Complexity Science (ICC), 1649-026 Lisbon, Portugal;
    Laboratory of Agent Modelling (LabMAg), ISCTE, 1649-026 Lisbon, Portugal)


This paper examines the interplay of opinion exchange dynamics and communication network formation. An opinion formation procedure is introduced which is based on an abstract representation of opinions ask-dimensional bit-strings. Individuals interact if the difference in the opinion strings is below a defined similarity thresholddI. Depending ondI, different behavior of the population is observed: low values result in a state of highly fragmented opinions and higher values yield consensus. The first contribution of this research is to identify the values of parametersdIandk, such that the transition between fragmented opinions and homogeneity takes place. Then, we look at this transition from two perspectives: first by studying the group size distribution and second by analyzing the communication network that is formed by the interactions that take place during the simulation. The emerging networks are classified by statistical means and we find that nontrivial social structures emerge from simple rules for individual communication. Generating networks allows to compare model outcomes with real-world communication patterns.

Suggested Citation

  • Sven Banisch & Tanya Araújo & Jorge Louçã, 2010. "Opinion Dynamics And Communication Networks," Advances in Complex Systems (ACS), World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd., vol. 13(01), pages 95-111.
  • Handle: RePEc:wsi:acsxxx:v:13:y:2010:i:01:n:s0219525910002438
    DOI: 10.1142/S0219525910002438

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Galam, Serge, 2004. "The dynamics of minority opinions in democratic debate," Physica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications, Elsevier, vol. 336(1), pages 56-62.
    2. F. Schweitzer & L. Behera, 2009. "Nonlinear voter models: the transition from invasion to coexistence," The European Physical Journal B: Condensed Matter and Complex Systems, Springer;EDP Sciences, vol. 67(3), pages 301-318, February.
    3. Duffy, John, 2006. "Agent-Based Models and Human Subject Experiments," Handbook of Computational Economics,in: Leigh Tesfatsion & Kenneth L. Judd (ed.), Handbook of Computational Economics, edition 1, volume 2, chapter 19, pages 949-1011 Elsevier.
    4. Tanya Araújo & Rui Vilela Mendes, 2007. "Innovation Success and Structural Change: An Abstract Agent Based Study," Working Papers Department of Economics 2007/25, ISEG - Lisbon School of Economics and Management, Department of Economics, Universidade de Lisboa.
    5. repec:wsi:acsxxx:v:03:y:2000:i:01n04:n:s0219525900000078 is not listed on IDEAS
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