Consensus formation times in anisotropic societies

Juan Neirotti*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We developed a statistical mechanics model to study the emergence of a consensus in societies of adapting, interacting agents constrained by a social rule B. In the mean-field approximation, we find that if the agents' interaction H0 is weak, all agents adapt to the social rule B, with which they form a consensus; however, if the interaction is sufficiently strong, a consensus is built against the established status quo. We observed that, after a transient time αt, agents asymptotically approach complete consensus by following a path whereby they neglect their neighbors' opinions on socially neutral issues (i.e., issues for which the society as a whole has no opinion). αt is found to be finite for most values of the interagent interaction H0 and temperature T, with the exception of the values H0=1, T→, and the region determined by the inequalities β<2 and 2βH0<1+β-1+2β-β2, for which consensus, with respect to B, is never reached.

Original languageEnglish
Article number062305
Number of pages10
JournalPhysical Review E
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 19 Jun 2017

Bibliographical note

© 2017 American Physical Society.


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