Multiplex Network Diffusion

Valentina Assenova, Management, The Wharton School, and Nidhi Sridhar, Computer and Information Science, University of Pennsylvania

Abstract: The diffusion of information through social networks presents an important area of re-search in economics, with applications to a variety of processes including the spread of new technologies. The majority of existing research has focused on modeling diffusion in simplex (one-layer) networks, yet many networks are multiplex (multi-layered), spanning many kinds of ties. We consider the role that multiplexity plays in diffusion, specifically through information bridging across structurally similar (vs. dissimilar) layers. Our simulations reveal that these layers exhibit distinct properties affecting diffusion, such as connectedness, clustering, and density, and are associated with different diffusion curves over time.

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