Adapting the social network to affect elections

Sigal Sina, Noam Hazon, Avinatan Hassidim, Sarit Kraus

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review

34 Scopus citations

Abstract

We investigate the effect a social network could have on voting outcomes. We consider a group of self-interested agents where each agent has a strict preference order over a set of outcomes. Each agent votes strategically, taking into consideration both her preferences, and her (limited) information about the preferences of other voters. We assume that the information the agent has comes from her friends in the social network and from a public opinion poll. If agents were not strategic at all, the social network (and the poll) would not matter, since they would just vote according to their preferences. However, if the agents deviate and vote strategically the network plays a great effect. To measure this effect, we focus on iterative voting with Plurality voting rule. We show, both in theory and in simulations, that for many networks, adding a linear number of edges can make any outcome the winner. We view our results as yet another indication to the effect that a central organizer, such as a company who controls social media, could have on our lives - by introducing us to certain people it can affect our information and our decisions.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAAMAS 2015 - Proceedings of the 2015 International Conference on Autonomous Agents and Multiagent Systems
EditorsEdith Elkind, Gerhard Weiss, Pinar Yolum, Rafael H. Bordini
Pages705-713
Number of pages9
ISBN (Electronic)9781450337700
StatePublished - 2015
Event14th International Conference on Autonomous Agents and Multiagent Systems, AAMAS 2015 - Istanbul, Turkey
Duration: 4 May 20158 May 2015

Publication series

NameProceedings of the International Joint Conference on Autonomous Agents and Multiagent Systems, AAMAS
Volume2
ISSN (Print)1548-8403
ISSN (Electronic)1558-2914

Conference

Conference14th International Conference on Autonomous Agents and Multiagent Systems, AAMAS 2015
Country/TerritoryTurkey
CityIstanbul
Period4/05/158/05/15

Keywords

  • Iterative voting
  • Social choice
  • Social networks

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