Effects of Time Horizons on Influence Maximization in the Voter Dynamics

Abstract In this paper we analyze influence maximization in the voter model with an active strategic and a passive influencing party in non-stationary settings. We thus explore the dependence of optimal influence allocation on the time horizons of the strategic influencer. We find that on undirected heterogeneous networks, for short time horizons, influence is maximized when targeting low-degree nodes, while for long time horizons influence maximization is achieved when controlling hub nodes. Furthermore, we show that for short and intermediate time scales influence maximization can exploit knowledge of (transient) opinion configurations. More in detail, we find two rules. First, nodes with states differing from the strategic influencer's goal should be targeted. Second, if only few nodes are initially aligned with the strategic influencer, nodes subject to opposing influence should be avoided, but when many nodes are aligned, an optimal influencer should shadow opposing influence.
  • Markus Brede (Southampton)
  • Valerio Restocchi (Southampton)
  • Sebastian Stein (Southampton)
Date Oct-2018
Venue Journal of Complex Networks, cny027, https://doi.org/10.1093/comnet/cny027 [link]