Modeling the Adoption of Innovations in the Presence of Geographic and Media Influences.

Abstract: While there is a large body of work examining the effects of social network structure on innovation adoption, models to
date have lacked considerations of real geography or mass media. In this article, we show these features are crucial to
making more accurate predictions of a social contagion and technology adoption at a city-to-city scale. Using data from the
adoption of the popular micro-blogging platform, Twitter, we present a model of adoption on a network that places
friendships in real geographic space and exposes individuals to mass media influence. We show that homophily both
among individuals with similar propensities to adopt a technology and geographic location is critical to reproducing
features of real spatiotemporal adoption. Furthermore, we estimate that mass media was responsible for increasing
Twitter’s user base two to four fold. To reflect this strength, we extend traditional contagion models to include an
endogenous mass media agent that responds to those adopting an innovation as well as influencing agents to adopt
themselves.

The open access publication can be found HERE.

 

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