MISSING DATA AS PART OF THE SOCIAL BEHAVIOR IN REAL-WORLD FINANCIAL COMPLEX SYSTEMS

GUY KELMAN, ERAN MANES, MARCO LAMIERI, DAVID S. BRÉE

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    Abstract

    Many real-world networks are known to exhibit facts that counter our knowledge prescribed by the theories on network creation and communication patterns. A common prerequisite in network analysis is that information on nodes and links will be complete because network topologies are extremely sensitive to missing information of this kind. Therefore, many real-world networks that fail to meet this criterion under random sampling may be discarded. In this paper, we offer a framework for interpreting the missing observations in network data under the hypothesis that these observations are not missing at random. We demonstrate the methodology with a case study of a financial trade network, where the awareness of agents to the data collection procedure by a self-interested observer may result in strategic revealing or withholding of information. The non-random missingness has been overlooked despite the possibility of this being an important feature of the processes by which the network is generated. The analysis demonstrates that strategic information withholding may be a valid general phenomenon in complex systems. The evidence is sufficient to support the existence of an influential observer and to offer a compelling dynamic mechanism for the creation of the network.

    Original languageEnglish
    JournalAdvances in Complex Systems
    Early online date12 Mar 2018
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2018

    Keywords

    • assortative mixing
    • Complex systems
    • data collection
    • dissortative networks
    • missing nodes/links
    • networks
    • observer effect
    • strategic information withholding

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