In the forum of the school’s new Wallis Annenberg Hall on November 20, 2014, Watts presented “Social Influence in Markets and Networks.” He described the surprising difficulty of empirically identifying social influence, which – despite the metaphor of “going viral” – doesn’t necessarily spread in anything like the way that infectious diseases do.
Duncan Watts is a founding member of the Microsoft Research-New York City lab. From 2000 to 2007, he was a professor of sociology at Columbia University, and then, prior to joining Microsoft, a principal research scientist at Yahoo! Research, where he directed the Human Social Dynamics Group. His most recent book is Everything Is Obvious Once You Know the Answer: How Common Sense Fails Us.
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