Modeling human dynamics of face-to-face interaction networks

Article, Preprint English OPEN
Starnini, M. ; Baronchelli, A. ; Pastor-Satorras, R. (2013)
  • Publisher: American Physical Society
  • Related identifiers: doi: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.110.168701
  • Subject: QC | Computer Science - Social and Information Networks | Physics - Physics and Society | Condensed Matter - Statistical Mechanics | H1

Face-to-face interaction networks describe social interactions in human gatherings, and are the substrate for processes such as epidemic spreading and gossip propagation. The bursty nature of human behavior characterizes many aspects of empirical data, such as the distribution of conversation lengths, of conversations per person, or of inter-conversation times. Despite several recent attempts, a general theoretical understanding of the global picture emerging from data is still lacking. Here we present a simple model that reproduces quantitatively most of the relevant features of empirical face-to-face interaction networks. The model describes agents which perform a random walk in a two dimensional space and are characterized by an attractiveness whose effect is to slow down the motion of people around them. The proposed framework sheds light on the dynamics of human interactions and can improve the modeling of dynamical processes taking place on the ensuing dynamical social networks.
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    1Departament de F´ısica i Enginyeria Nuclear, Universitat Polit`ecnica de Catalunya, Campus Nord B4, 08034 Barcelona, Spain 2Laboratory for the Modeling of Biological and Socio-technical Systems, Northeastern University, Boston MA 02115, USA (Dated: April 19, 2013)

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