23 Pages Posted: 13 Sep 2017
Date Written: April 5, 2017
The spread of a novel behavior due to individual agency, as represented by a potential function, is compared to the spread of novel behavior due to the collective agency of those with strategic complementarities. An autonomous set of players is one which might be reasonably expected to adopt the novelty irrespective of the choices of those outside the set. Two forms of autonomy are compared. These are potential autonomy and agency autonomy, which relate to the graph theoretic quantities of close-knittedness and cohesion, respectively. Necessary and sufficient conditions for potential autonomy to imply agency autonomy and vice versa are given and related to different classes of coordination game.
Keywords: agency, potential, contagion, networks
JEL Classification: C73
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation
Newton, Jonathan and Sercombe, Damian, Agency, Potential and Contagion (April 5, 2017). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3035245