Communication Norms and the Collective Cognitive Performance of 'Invisible Colleges': Modeling the Epistemological Functioning of Scientific Research Networks


"Scientific research communities or 'invisible colleges' are conceptualized in this paper as communications structures formed by the overlapping of more compact networks of personal associations among researchers to participate in and contribute to the collective epistemological performance. At the micro-behavioral level, the analysis posits a population of rational research agents who engage individually in continuous processes of experimental observation and Bayesian inference, but the interpretation placed upon their current empirical observations is influenced by the distribution of beliefs in their local network affect the transmission of both new propositions or scientific claims, and prevailing opinion as to the reliability of such statements."



game theory, epistemology, networks