Doctoral Dissertations

Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Mechanical Engineering

Major Professor

Subhadeep Chakraborty

Committee Members

Michael Berry, Eric R. Wade, Xiaopeng Zhao


The overarching goal of this thesis is to further our understanding about opinion evolution in networked societies. Such insights can be used in a variety of fields such as economy, marketing, transportation, egress, etc. Three main subjects build up this interdisciplinary research: Sociology, Statistical Mechanics, and Network Sciences. In this thesis, for macrolevel (or society-level) analyses, techniques from statistical mechanics have been borrowed to mathematically model the opinion dynamic on different network topologies based on different interaction models. Also, for micro-level (individual-level) analyses, Individual Decision Making Algorithms (IDMA) have been designed. To account for both macro-level and micro-level dynamics, these two regimes are combined resulting in a more accurate model for opinion propagation. Assessing the controllability of such dynamics through experiments in presence of actual humans is the part of this thesis.


Except Chapter 1 and Chapter 5, all chapters of this dissertation have been published.

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