Complexity 19 (2014) 83-94. doi:10.1002/cplx.21523

Modeling Diffusion of Energy Innovations on a Heterogeneous Social Network and Approaches to Integration of Real-World Data

Catherine S. E. Bale, Nicholas J. McCullen, Tim J. Foxon, Alastair M. Rucklidge and William F. Gale
Abstract. A model has been developed to simulate the diffusion of energy innovations on a heterogeneous social network. Nodes on a network represent households, whose adoption of an energy innovation is based on a combination of personal and social benefit; social benefit includes the positive influence from an individual's personal social network and feedback from the wider population. This article describes the development of the model to incorporate heterogeneous parameters and, thus, become more like a real social system. The sensitivity of the model is investigated and it is shown that heterogeneity matters. This has important implications for the inclusion of real-world data into this type of model.

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