Reach of the Entrepreneur

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While the above results are valuable, they are just the beginning. Just how robust are the effects of norm entrepreneurs found in these initial analyses? Under what conditions do norm entrepreneurs have which effects? To begin to answer these questions, I undertook sensitivity analysis on the model in order to assess the importance of entrepreneur reach.441 investigated the impact of limited reach—the effects if the norm entrepreneur could not influence the whole population, but rather just a portion of it. For this analysis I let the reach of the entrepreneur vary (30-40 percent of the population, 40-50 percent, 50-60 percent, 60-70 percent, 70-80 percent, 80-90 percent, 90-100 percent) in order to check whether these changes made a significant impact on the mean number of rounds where a norm was present. Table 4.1 presents the results of this analysis.

What we see is that even norm entrepreneurs with a very limited reach (as low as 30 percent of the population of agents) are able to significantly increase the number of rounds in which there are norms present. The next statistically significant increase in the mean number of rounds with a norm does not come until the reach of the entrepreneur is extended to 60-70 percent of the population. This makes sense, as now the entrepreneur can reach enough agents to instantly create a norm if agents' current rules are performing poorly (the definition of norm used here is 70 percent of the population using the same rule). We see further that once the reach of the entrepreneur reaches 80 percent, there is another significant improvement but that further increases do not significantly influence the mean number of rounds with a norm.

In essence, norm entrepreneurs are able to influence the population even when they cannot reach a large percentage of the population, and their influence grows with their reach. This is in line with the expectations of the norm life cycle. The norm entrepreneur is a catalyst that alters the social context when only a few other agents accept her suggestion. This disruption in the social context leads other agents to change their behavior and eventually a norm emerges.

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