[Question] Distribution of info-cascades across fields? [Info-cascade series]

This is a ques­tion in the info-cas­cade ques­tion se­ries. There is a prize pool of up to $800 for an­swers to these ques­tions. See the link above for full back­ground on the prob­lem (in­clud­ing a bibliog­ra­phy) as well as ex­am­ples of re­sponses we’d be es­pe­cially ex­cited to see.


How com­mon, and how large, are info-cas­cades in com­mu­ni­ties that seek to make in­tel­lec­tual progress, such as academia? This dis­tri­bu­tion is pre­sum­ably very heavy-tailed as we are deal­ing with net­work phe­nom­ena. But what is its ac­tual val­ues? How can we es­ti­mate this num­ber?

A good start­ing point for think­ing about this might be the pa­per “How cita­tion dis­tor­tions cre­ate un­founded au­thor­ity: anal­y­sis of a cita­tion net­work” (Green­berg, 2009), which uses so­cial net­work the­ory and graph the­ory to trace how an at best very un­cer­tain claim in biomedicine cas­cad­ing into es­tab­lished knowl­edge. We won’t at­tempt to sum­marise the pa­per here.

No answers.