A Polya Urn Model of Conformity
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Xue, J. (2006). A Polya Urn Model of Conformity. http://www.dspace.cam.ac.uk/handle/1810/131644
In this paper we propose to use Polya urn processes to model the emergence of conformity in an environment where people interact with each other sequentially and indirectly, through a common physical facility. Examples include rewinding video tapes, erasing blackboards, and switching headlights, etc. We find that a minimum amount of imitation is able to generate a maximum level of conformity. We then reinterpret the result in a group imitation setup, and show that as long as groups imitate each other with positive probabilities, they will end up with the same population composition, irrespective of the initial conditions, and the imitating probabilities.
Classification-JEL: C6, D7., Polya urn, conformity, emergence, social norms
This record's URL: http://www.dspace.cam.ac.uk/handle/1810/131644