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Fixation and Consensus Times on a Network: A Unified Approach

Physical Review Letters
American Physical Society
Publication Date
  • Biology
  • Ecology
  • Mathematics
  • Medicine


We investigate a set of stochastic models of biodiversity, population genetics, language evolution, and opinion dynamics on a network within a common framework. Each node has a state 0 < x(i)< 1 with interactions specified by strengths m(ij). For any set of m(ij), we derive an approximate expression for the mean time to reach fixation or consensus (all x(i)=0 or 1). Remarkably, in a case relevant to language change, this time is independent of the network structure.

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