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Segregation in social networks

Angelo Mele
2010 Proceedings of the Behavioral and Quantitative Game Theory on Conference on Future Directions - BQGT '10  
I develop a dynamic heterogeneous agents model of strategic network formation, where a matching technology and preferences for same-type individuals drive the dynamics of friendship. The model converges to a unique stationary distribution that is structurally estimated using Markov Chain Monte Carlo methods and stochastic approximation techniques. I use data from the restricted version of Add Health, a representative survey of US high schools containing detailed data on the actual friendship
more » ... ctual friendship network of each student. Results show that the tendency to create links to individuals of the same racial group is pervasive. However, I find that a certain degree of heterogeneity in mutual and indirect friends increases utility of the agents. I use the model to simulate policies whose goal is to increase the degree of interracial contact. I re-assign some minority students to another school where there are only few minority students. The simulations show that these policies decrease students' welfare in the new stationary equilibrium. * I am extremely grateful to Roger Koenker, for continuous guidance and generous advice. I am also heavily indebted with Ron Laschever for several suggestions that improved the quality of the paper. I thank
doi:10.1145/1807406.1807492 dblp:conf/bqgt/Mele10 fatcat:pry7hcrwpral3lf5posp3vbbza