"Networks, Diffusion and Inequality"

Mon, May 7, 2018, 12:15 pm

ABSTRACT:  Networks, Diffusion and Inequality

Prior work defines network externalities (where the value of a practice is a function of network alters that have already adopted the practice) as a mechanism exacerbating social inequality under the condition of homophily (where advantaged individuals poised to be primary adopters are socially connected to other advantaged individuals). This work does not consider consolidation (correlation between traits), a population parameter that is essential to network formation and diffusion. Using a computational model, we first show that prior findings linking homophily to segregated social ties and to differential diffusion outcomes are contingent on high levels of consolidation. Homophily, under low consolidation, is not sufficient to exacerbate existing differences in adoption probabilities across groups, and can even end up alleviating inter-group inequality by facilitating diffusion. We then apply this idea to the empirical case of Mexico-U.S. migration. We show that homophily and consolidation allow us to capture the structural constraints to diffusion, and explain why somenewly-emerging migrant communities eventually come to surpass historic migrant regions in levels of migration.

Filiz GaripFiliz Garip’s research lies at the intersection of migration, economic sociology and inequality. Within this general area, she studies the mechanisms that enable or constrain mobility and lead to greater or lesser degrees of social and economic inequality.

Her articles have been published in Population and Development Review, Demography, Social Forces and the American Journal of Sociology. Her book, , On the Move: Changing Mechanisms of Mexico-U.S. Migration is in print at Princeton University Press; it characterizes the diversity of the Mexican migrant population in the United States. Garip received her Ph.D. in Sociology and M.S.E in Operations Research & Financial Engineering both from Princeton University. She holds a B.Sc. in Industrial Engineering from Bogazici University, Istanbul.

Dr. Garip received the Harold W. Dodds Honorific Fellowship at Princeton, and was part of the Woodrow Wilson Society of Fellows. At Harvard, she taught courses on migration and economic sociology, and won the George Kahrl Excellence in Teaching Award from the Department of Sociology. She serves as a consulting editor for the American Journal of Sociology and Sociological Science.

Dr. Garip collaborates with scholars in different fields, including political science, computer science and statistics. Her research has been supported by grants from the National Science Foundation, the Clark Fund, Milton Fund, Cornell’s Center for the Study of Inequality, Harvard Center for Population and Development Studies, David Rockefeller Center for Latin American Studies, Harvard Academy for International and Area Studies, and the Weatherhead Center for International Affairs.

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