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Social Conflicts Studied by Statistical Physics Approach and Monte Carlo Simulations

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Laboratoire de Physique Théorique et Modélisation Université de Cergy-Pontoise, CNRS, UMR 8089, 2 Avenue Adolphe Chauvin, 95302 Cergy-Pontoise, CEDEX, France
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Department of Physics, Cleveland State University, Cleveland, OH 44115, USA
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Levin College of Urban Affairs, Cleveland State University, Cleveland, OH 44115, USA
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Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Presented at the 5th International Electronic Conference on Entropy and Its Applications, 18–30 November 2019; Available online: https://ecea-5.sciforum.net/.
Proceedings 2020, 46(1), 4; https://doi.org/10.3390/ecea-5-06661
Published: 17 November 2019
Statistical physics models of social systems with a large number of members, each interacting with a subset of others, have been used in very diverse domains such as culture dynamics, crowd behavior, information dissemination and social conflicts. We observe that such models rely on the fact that large societal groups display surprising regularities despite individual agency. Unlike physics phenomena that obey Newton’s third law, in the world of humans the magnitudes of action and reaction are not necessarily equal. The effect of the actions of group n on group m can differ from the effect of group m on group n. We thus use the spin language to describe humans with this observation in mind. Note that particular individual behaviors do not survive in statistical averages. Only common characteristics remain. We have studied two-group conflicts as well as three-group conflicts. We have used time-dependent Mean-Field Theory and Monte Carlo simulations. Each group is defined by two parameters which express the intra-group strength of interaction among members and its attitude toward negotiations. The interaction with the other group is parameterized by a constant which expresses an attraction or a repulsion to other group average attitude. The model includes a social temperature T which acts on each group and quantifies the social noise. One of the most striking features is the periodic oscillation of the attitudes toward negotiation or conflict for certain ranges of parameter values. Other striking results include chaotic behavior, namely intractable, unpredictable conflict outcomes.
Keywords: social conflicts; statistical physics approach; complex systems; mean-field theory; Monte Carlo simulation social conflicts; statistical physics approach; complex systems; mean-field theory; Monte Carlo simulation
MDPI and ACS Style

Diep, H.T.; Kaufman, M.; Kaufman, S. Social Conflicts Studied by Statistical Physics Approach and Monte Carlo Simulations. Proceedings 2020, 46, 4.

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