nep-net New Economics Papers
on Network Economics
Issue of 2012‒04‒23
seven papers chosen by
Yi-Nung Yang
Chung Yuan Christian University

  1. Network structure of inter-industry flows By James McNerney; Brian D. Fath; Gerald Silverberg
  2. Lock-in or lock-out? How structural properties of knowledge networks affect regional resilience? By Joan Crespo; Raphaël Suire; Jérôme Vicente
  3. The impact of network inhomogeneities on contagion and system stability By Hübsch, Arnd; Walther, Ursula
  4. Threshold Learning Dynamics in Social Networks. By [no author]
  5. Social Insurance Networks By Markussen, Simen; Røed, Knut
  6. Ethnic Networks and Technical Knowledge Learning in Industrial Clusters By Chung, Yessica C.Y.
  7. Impact of service station networks on purchase decisions of alternative-fuel vehicles By Achtnicht, Martin; Bühler, Georg; Hermeling, Claudia

  1. By: James McNerney; Brian D. Fath; Gerald Silverberg
    Abstract: We study the structure of inter-industry relationships using networks of money flows between industries in 20 national economies. We find these networks vary around a typical structure characterized by a Weibull link weight distribution, exponential industry size distribution, and a common community structure. The community structure is hierarchical, with the top level of the hierarchy comprising five industry communities: food industries, chemical industries, manufacturing industries, service industries, and extraction industries.
    Date: 2012–04
  2. By: Joan Crespo (University of Toulouse, LEREPS); Raphaël Suire (University of Rennes 1 - CREM (UMR 6211 CNRS)); Jérôme Vicente (University of Toulouse, LEREPS, Toulouse Business School)
    Abstract: The paper develops an evolutionary framework of regional resilience with a primary focus on the structural properties of local knowledge networks. After a presentation of the network-based rationales of growth and structuring of clusters, we analyze under which structural conditions a regional cluster can mix short run competitiveness without compromising long run resilience capabilities. We show that degree distribution (the level of hierarchy) and degree correlation (the level of structural homophily) of regional knowledge networks are suited properties for studying how clusters succeed in combining technological lock-in and regional lock-out. We propose a simple model of cluster structuring in order to highlight these properties, and discuss the results on a policy-oriented analysis. We conclude showing that policies for regional resilience fit better with ex ante regional diagnosis and targeted interventions on particular missing links, rather than expost myopic applications of policies based on an unconditional increase of network relational density.
    Keywords: Resilience, clusters, degree distribution, assortativity, regional policy
    JEL: B52 D85 O33 R11 R12
    Date: 2012–03
  3. By: Hübsch, Arnd; Walther, Ursula
    Abstract: This work extends the contagion model introduced by Nier et al. (2007) to inhomogeneous networks. We preserve the convenient description of a financial system by a sparsely parameterized random graph but add several relevant inhomogeneities, namely well-connected banks, financial institutions with disproportionately large interbank assets, and big banks focusing on wholesale and retail customers. These extensions significantly enhance the model's generality as they reflect inhomogeneities as found in reality with a potentially decisive impact on system stability. Whereas well-connected banks and big retail banks have only a surprisingly modest impact, we find a significantly enhanced contagion risk in networks containing institutions with disproportionately large interbank assets. Moreover, we show that these effects can be partly compensated by a suitable regulatory response which demands additional net worth buffers for banks with above average volume of interbank assets. The stabilising effect is most notably achieved by a pure redistribution of equity capital without increasing its total amount. --
    Keywords: capital buffers,contagion,contagious defaults,inhomogeneities,network models,financial system stability
    JEL: C63 G21 G28
    Date: 2012
  4. By: [no author]
    Abstract: Social learning is defined as the ability of a population to aggregate information, a process which must crucially depend on the mechanisms of social interaction. Consumers choosing which product to buy, or voters deciding which option to take with respect to an important issue, typically confront external signals to the information gathered from their contacts. Economic models typically predict that correct social learning occurs in large populations unless some individuals display unbounded influence. We challenge this conclusion by showing that an intuitive threshold process of individual adjustment does not always lead to such social learning. We find, specifically, that three generic regimes exist separated by sharp discontinuous transitions. And only in one of them, where the threshold is within a suitable intermediate range, the population learns the correct information. In the other two, where the threshold is either too high or too low, the system either freezes or enters into persistent flux, respectively. These regimes are generally observed in different social networks (both complex or regular), but limited interaction is found to promote correct learning by enlarging the parameter region where it occurs.
    Date: 2011
  5. By: Markussen, Simen (Ragnar Frisch Centre for Economic Research); Røed, Knut (Ragnar Frisch Centre for Economic Research)
    Abstract: Based on administrative panel data from Norway, we examine how social insurance dependency spreads within neighborhoods, families, ethnic minorities, and among former schoolmates. We use a fixed effects methodology that accounts for endogenous group formation, contextual interactions, and time-constant as well as time-varying confounders. We report evidence that social insurance dependency is contagious. The estimated network effects are both quantitatively and statistically significant, and they rise rapidly with "relational closeness" in a way that establishes endogenous social interaction as a central causal mechanism. Social interactions do not cross ethnic borders.
    Keywords: social interaction, social multiplier, work norms, peer effects
    JEL: C31 H55 I38
    Date: 2012–03
  6. By: Chung, Yessica C.Y.
    Abstract: Using an enterprise-level dataset collected from 234 workshops located in the furniture cluster of the city of Arusha, Tanzania, this paper investigates the mechanisms of technical knowledge exchange that take place in clusters. A knowledge exchange link is defined as any two clustering entrepreneurs who perform similar manufacturing techniques in the production process. The results show that the strength of the ethnic networks of producers has positive effects on acquisition of manufacturing techniques, particularly in skills such as wood-joining, which are mainly influenced by a producer’s own skills rather than production facilities. Using dyadic data analysis, this paper further finds that two producers from the same ethnic minority are more likely to exhibit the same manufacturing techniques compared with two producers from the same ethnic majority. These findings suggest that ethnic networks facilitate knowledge exchange in an industrial cluster, but that this positive externality of the ethnic network effect only takes place in small-sized ethnic groups, and only to the extent that sophisticated facilities are not essential in the knowledge learning processes.
    Keywords: ethnic networks , knowledge learning , industrial cluster , Africa
    Date: 2012–01–24
  7. By: Achtnicht, Martin; Bühler, Georg; Hermeling, Claudia
    Abstract: In this paper, we study the impact of fuel availability on demand for alternative-fuel vehicles, using data from a survey of some 600 potential car buyers in Germany. The survey was conducted as a computer-assisted personal interview and included a choice experiment involving cars with various fuel types. Applying a standard logit model, we show that fuel availability influences choices positively, but its marginal utility diminishes with supply. Furthermore, we derive consumers' marginal willingness to pay for an expanded service station network. The results suggest that a failure to expand the availability of alternative fuel stations represents a significant barrier to the widespread adoption of alternative-fuel vehicles. --
    Keywords: Alternative Fuels,Automobile,Fueling Infrastructure,Stated Preference
    JEL: C25 D12 R41
    Date: 2012

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