Emergent patterns in large social systems

author: Dennis M. Wilkinson, HP Labs, Palo Alto, HP Labs
published: Nov. 26, 2007,   recorded: September 2007,   views: 3951

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Although they are composed of hundreds, thousands, or even millions of heterogeneous individuals, large-scale social systems manifest consistent macroscopic patterns in their network structure and interaction dynamics. An understanding of these patterns can not only shed light on certain aspects of individual behavior, but also provide insight into matters such as identification of key communities or individuals, the relation between social structure and group performance, the dynamics of information propagation, the resilience of networks to attack, and many others.

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