Asymmetric Contrarians in Opinion Dynamics
1 - 19 p.
Opinion dynamics, Local and global majority, Tipping points, Sociophysics
Asymmetry in contrarian behavior is investigated within the Galam model of opinion dynamics using update groups of size 3 with two competing opinions A and B. Denoting x and y the respective proportions of A and B contrarians, four schemes of implementations are studied. The first scheme activates contrarians after each series of updates with probabilities x and y for agents holding respectively opinion A and B. Second scheme activates contrarians within the update groups only against global majority with probability x when A is the majority and y when B is the majority. The third scheme considers in-group contrarians acting prior to the local majority update against both local majority and minority opinions. The last scheme activates in-group contrarians prior to the local majority update but only against the local majority. The main result is the loss of the fifty–fifty attractor produced by symmetric contrarians. Producing a bit less contrarians on its own side than the other side becomes the key to win a public debate, which in turn can guarantee an election victory. The associated phase diagram of opinion dynamics is found to exhibit a rich variety of counterintuitive results.