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Computer Simulations of Opinions and Their Reactions to Extreme Events

By Santo Fortunato and Dietrich Stauffer


We review the opinion dynamics in the computer models of Deffuant et al. (D), of Krause and Hegselmann (KH), and of Sznajd (S). All these models allow for consensus (one final opinion), polarization (two final opinions), and fragmentation (more than two final opinions), depending on how tolerant people are to different opinions. We then simulate the reactions of people to extreme events, in that we modify the opinion of an individual and investigate how the dynamics of a consensus model diffuses this perturbation among the other members of a community. It often happens that the original shock induced by the extreme event influences the opinion of a big part of the society.

Publisher: Springer, Berlin-Heidelberg
Year: 2006
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