Sebastian Pink, David Kretschmer, Lars Leszczensky
Choice Modelling in Social Networks Using Stochastic Actor-Oriented Models

Journal of Choice Modelling, 2020: 34, issue March, (article 100202)
ISSN: 1755-5345

Combining choice modelling with social network analysis, we show how the stochastic actor-oriented model for the co-evolution of networks and behavior (SAOM) can be used as a powerful statistical framework to empirically analyze network-related choices. We discuss the underlying assumptions of SAOMs and show that they can be interpreted as a random utility maximization model (RUM). Network-related choices pertain both to decisions to engage in (or disengage from) specific social relationships and decisions to adapt behavior to that of social contacts. We demonstrate the usefulness of SAOM for the choice modelling community. We further illustrate how SAOM can be used to study network-related choices by providing an exemplary empirical analysis.