Transitivity matters. Norms Enforcement and diffusion using different neighborhoods in CAs
The study of norms' self-enforcement and diffusion is one of the most acknowledged application of ABMs. Peer pressure, limited knowledge and communication channels are some of the most accounted elements in this kind of modelization, and for these same reasons, cellular automata models are very popular for the subject. A very interesting model in this ambit is Centola, et al. (2005). "The Emperor's New Clothes", the popular fable, is used as example of a society where stable compliance to a norm that the majority does not want to observe is made possible by the presence of a committed minority that triggers compliance cascades through peer-pressure. This paper, starting from the original code, unfolds the concept of "cascade” phenomena. Changing the order of procedure and especially the neighborhood structure is not only a way to test results robustness; the transitivity structure of two different neighborhoods (Von Neumann and Moore neighborhood), on which the local rule is constructed, develops completely different emergent results, under similar initial conditions. Results from this work give insights on how code design strongly changes outcomes interpretation, in particular the concepts of “cascade” and “diffusion”.
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