Explaining Changes in Physical Activity Through a Computational Model of Social Contagion

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Social processes play a key role in health behaviour. Understanding the underlying mechanisms of such processes is important when designing health interventions with a social component. In this work, we apply a computational model of social contagion to a data set of 2,472 users of a physical activity promotion program. We compare this model’s predictions to the predictions of a simple linear model that has been derived by a regression analysis. The results show that the social contagion model performs better at describing the pattern seen in the empirical data than the linear model, indicating that some of the dynamics of the physical activity levels in the network can be explained by social contagion processes.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationComplex Networks VIII. CompleNet 2017.
Number of pages11
ISBN (Electronic)978-3-319-54241-6
ISBN (Print)978-3-319-54240-9
Publication statusPublished - 21 Mar 2017

Publication series

NameSpringer Proceedings in Complexity


  • Computational modeling
  • Physical activity
  • Social contagion
  • Validation

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