Equality of opportunity and integration in social networks

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Abstract

We propose the notion of k-integration as a measure of equality of opportunity in social networks. A social network is k-integrated if there is a path of length at most k between any two individuals, thus guaranteeing that everybody has the same network opportunities to find a job, a romantic partner, or valuable information. We compute the minimum number of bridges (i.e. edges between nodes belonging to different components) or central nodes (those which are endpoints to a bridge) required to ensure k-integration. The answer depends only linearly on the size of each component for k=2, and does not depend on the size of each component for k≥3. Our findings provide a simple and intuitive way to compare the equality of opportunity of real-life social networks.
Original languageEnglish
JournalPhysica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications
Volume530
Early online date24 May 2019
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 15 Sep 2019
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Equality of opportunity
  • Social integration
  • Social networks

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