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Stat Med. 2013 Feb 20;32(4):581-90; discussion 597-9. doi: 10.1002/sim.5551.

The social contagion hypothesis: comment on 'Social contagion theory: examining dynamic social networks and human behavior'.

Author information

1
Department of Statistics, Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, PA, U.S.A. acthomas@stat.cmu.edu

Abstract

I reflect on the statistical methods of the Christakis-Fowler studies on network-based contagion of traits by checking the sensitivity of these kinds of results to various alternate specifications and generative mechanisms. Despite the honest efforts of all involved, I remain pessimistic about establishing whether binary health outcomes or product adoptions are contagious if the evidence comes from simultaneously observed data.

PMID:
23341080
DOI:
10.1002/sim.5551
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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