Information Acquisition and Exchange in Social Networks

Sanjeev Goyal, Stephanie Rosenkranz, Utz Weitzel, Vincent Buskens

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


A central feature of social networks is information sharing. The Internet and related computing technologies shape the relative costs of private information acquisition and forming links with others. This article presents an experiment on the effects of changing costs. We find that a decline in relative costs of linking makes private investments more dispersed and gives rise to denser social networks. Aggregate investment falls but individuals’ access to investment remains stable, due to increased networking. The overall effect is an increase in individual utility and aggregate welfare.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2302-2331
Number of pages30
JournalEconomic Journal
Issue number606
StatePublished - Nov 2017

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Economics and Econometrics


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