Dynamics of Strategic Information Transmission in Social Networks

55 Pages Posted: 21 Dec 2016

See all articles by Manuel Foerster

Manuel Foerster

University of Hamburg - Department of Economics

Date Written: December 21, 2016


We develop a dynamic framework of strategic information transmission through cheap talk in a social network. Privately informed agents have different preferences about the action to be implemented by each agent and repeatedly communicate with their neighbors in the network. We first characterize myopic (best response) equilibria as well as fully informative myopic equilibria. Second, we provide a sufficient condition for the existence of a fully informative farsighted (perfect Bayesian) equilibrium. Fully informative myopic and farsighted equilibria essentially take a particular simple form: all communication is truthful along a tree subnetwork. We also consider societies in which both myopic and farsighted agents are present and analyze equilibrium welfare. Furthermore, we extend our model to public communication and investigate the implications of our results for the design of institutions. Finally, our results suggest that myopic equilibria tend to Pareto dominate farsighted equilibria, in particular if a social planner has designed the network optimally.

Keywords: cheap talk, information aggregation, learning, social networks, strategic communication

JEL Classification: C72, D82, D83, D85

Suggested Citation

Foerster, Manuel, Dynamics of Strategic Information Transmission in Social Networks (December 21, 2016). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2888492 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2888492

Manuel Foerster (Contact Author)

University of Hamburg - Department of Economics ( email )

Von-Melle-Park 5
room 2128 C rise
Hamburg, 20146

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