Game-theoretic modeling of collective decision making during epidemics
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Copyright © 2021 American Physical Society
The spreading dynamics of an epidemic and the collective behavioral pattern of the population over which it spreads are deeply intertwined and the latter can critically shape the outcome of the former. Motivated by this, we design a parsimonious game-theoretic behavioral-epidemic model, in which an interplay of realistic factors shapes the coevolution of individual decision making and epidemics on a network. Although such a coevolution is deeply intertwined in the real world, existing models schematize population behavior as instantaneously reactive, thus being unable to capture human behavior in the long term. Our paradigm offers a unified framework to model and predict complex emergent phenomena, including successful collective responses, periodic oscillations, and resurgent epidemic outbreaks. The framework also allows us to provide analytical insights on the epidemic process and to assess the effectiveness of different policy interventions on ensuring a collective response that successfully eradicates the outbreak. Two case studies, inspired by real-world diseases, are presented to illustrate the potentialities of the proposed model.
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