Presentation Title

Cultural Dissemination: A Modified Model with Social Influence

Faculty Mentor

Adam Landsberg

Start Date

17-11-2018 9:00 AM

End Date

17-11-2018 9:15 AM

Location

C335

Session

Oral 1

Type of Presentation

Oral Talk

Subject Area

physical_mathematical_sciences

Abstract

We study cultural dissemination in the context of Robert Axelrod’s agent-based model for the spread of cultural values, with an added element of social influence. This modified model in turn leads to new equilibrium states not seen in Axelrod’s original model, including greater variation in number and size of distinct cultural regions. We introduce several new metrics to quantitatively characterize the level of heterogeneity in these new equilibrium states. Additionally, we examine the dynamical approach to equilibrium in our Social Influence Model as well as Axelrod’s model, which not only yields interesting insights into the differences in behaviors of the two different models over time, but also provides a more comprehensive view into the behavior of Axelrod’s original model.

Summary of research results to be presented

Our modified model of cultural influence resulted in more distinct cultural zones once the grid had settled to equilibrium. In addition, the number of stable regions for the Social Influence Model continued to increase as the size of the grid increased, while the number of stable regions in the equilibrium state of Axelrod’s model consistently decreased on grid sizes larger than six agents by six agents. We found that the social influence model took more time but fewer interactions to reach equilibrium when compared with Axelrod’s original model. This was caused, in part, by each agent being less likely to change back and forth between different cultural states as compared to the original model. In Axelrod’s model, order increased linearly, whereas our Social Influence Model experienced an initially rapid assimilation of agents followed by a slower convergence to the equilibrium state. Our various measures of heterogeneity in the equilibrium state also demonstrated a higher final disorder for the Social Influence Model. We found that for both models, agents in the middle of the grid experienced the most interactions, with decreasing numbers of interactions per agent closer to the edges of the grid. This effect was more pronounced in the Social Influence Model. This suggests a “freezing” of cultural regions that spreads inwards towards the edges, with the hard borders of cultural zones becoming catalysts for region formation.

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Nov 17th, 9:00 AM Nov 17th, 9:15 AM

Cultural Dissemination: A Modified Model with Social Influence

C335

We study cultural dissemination in the context of Robert Axelrod’s agent-based model for the spread of cultural values, with an added element of social influence. This modified model in turn leads to new equilibrium states not seen in Axelrod’s original model, including greater variation in number and size of distinct cultural regions. We introduce several new metrics to quantitatively characterize the level of heterogeneity in these new equilibrium states. Additionally, we examine the dynamical approach to equilibrium in our Social Influence Model as well as Axelrod’s model, which not only yields interesting insights into the differences in behaviors of the two different models over time, but also provides a more comprehensive view into the behavior of Axelrod’s original model.