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Resource Sharing in Social Networks: Equilibriums, Behavioral Biases, and Gini Indexes

George Iosifidis, SCSS/TCD
2-3pm  3rd Apr 2019


echnologically enabled sharing-economy networks are changing the way humans trade and collaborate. Here, using a novel ‘Wi-Fi sharing’ game, we explored determinants of human sharing strategy. Subjects (N = 1,950) participated in a networked game in which they could choose how to allocate a limited, but personally not usable, resource (representing unused Wi-Fi bandwidth) to immediate network neighbours. We first embedded N = 600 subjects into 30 networks, experimentally manipulating the range over which subjects could connect. We find that denser networks decrease any wealth inequality, but that this effect saturates. Individuals’ benefit is shaped by their network position, with having many partners who in turn have few partners being especially beneficial. We propose a new, simplified “sharing centrality” metric for quantifying this. Further experiments (N = 1,200) confirm the robustness of the effect of network structure on sharing behavior. Our findings suggest the possibility of interventions to help more evenly distribute shared resources over networks.

Short Bio

George Iosifidis is the Ussher Assistant Professor in Future Networks, Trinity College Dublin. He obtained his M.Sc and Ph.D degrees from the ECE Department, University of Thessaly, Greece, in 2007 and 2012, respectively. He also holds an engineering Diploma in avionics and quality control. He worked as a Post-doctoral researcher at CERTH, Greece, and Yale university, for 2 years respectively. His research interests lie in the broad area of network optimisation and network economics with applications to wireless networks. Recent topics of focus are carrier-grade mobile data offloading and caching, edge-networking architectures, video delivery and green-networking in 5G systems, and sharing economy mechanisms.


Large Conference Room, O'Reilly Institute