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The coevolution of contagion and behavior with increasing and decreasing awareness.

07:00 EST 3rd December 2019 | BioPortfolio

Summary of "The coevolution of contagion and behavior with increasing and decreasing awareness."

Understanding the effects of individual awareness on epidemic phenomena is important to comprehend the coevolving system dynamic, to improve forecasting, and to better evaluate the outcome of possible interventions. In previous models of epidemics on social networks, individual awareness has often been approximated as a generic personal trait that depends on social reinforcement, and used to introduce variability in state transition probabilities. A novelty of this work is to assume that individual awareness is a function of several contributing factors pooled together, different by nature and dynamics, and to study it for different epidemic categories. This way, our model still has awareness as the core attribute that may change state transition probabilities. Another contribution is to study positive and negative variations of awareness, in a contagion-behavior model. Imitation is the key mechanism that we model for manipulating awareness, under different network settings and assumptions, in particular regarding the degree of intentionality that individuals may exhibit in spreading an epidemic. Three epidemic categories are considered-disease, addiction, and rumor-to discuss different imitation mechanisms and degree of intentionality. We assume a population with a heterogeneous distribution of awareness and different response mechanisms to information gathered from the network. With simulations, we show the interplay between population and awareness factors producing a distribution of state transition probabilities and analyze how different network and epidemic configurations modify transmission patterns.

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This article was published in the following journal.

Name: PloS one
ISSN: 1932-6203
Pages: e0225447

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