An Economics Approach
824 pp., 8 x 9 in, 237 color illus.
- Published: April 18, 2023
- Publisher: The MIT Press
An accessible and comprehensive overview of the economic theory and the realities of networks written by a pioneering economics researcher.
Networks are everywhere: the infrastructure that brings water into our homes, the social networks made up of our friends and families, the supply chains connecting cities, people, and goods. These interconnections contain economic trade-offs: for example, should an airline operate direct flights between cities or route all its flights through a hub? Viewing networks through an economics lens, this textbook considers the costs and benefits that govern their formation and functioning.
Networks are central to an understanding of the production, consumption, and information that lie at the heart of economic activity. Sanjeev Goyal provides advanced undergraduate and graduate students with an accessible and comprehensive introduction to the economics research on networks of the past twenty-five years. Each chapter introduces a theoretical model illustrated with the help of case studies and formal proofs. After introducing the theoretical concepts, Goyal examines economic networks, including infrastructure, security, market power, and financial networks. He then covers social networks, with chapters on coordinating activity, communication and learning, information networks, epidemics, and impersonal markets. Finally, Goyal locates social and economic networks in a broader context covering networked markets, economic development, trust, and group networks in their relation to markets and the state.
• First textbook to provide a broad and comprehensive overview of twenty-first-century economic theory of networks
• Features engaging case studies and accessible exercises
• Written by a pioneering economics researcher
A fascinating book that shows how networks are connected to some of the central ideas in economics, and builds into a far-ranging exploration of how networks operate in the world.
Jon Kleinberg, Tisch University Professor, Cornell University
Extraordinarily clear and comprehensive, Networks will be an indispensable reference for both students and researchers alike. The text remarkably both distills and details the essential arguments and insights.
Rachel Kranton, James B. Duke Professor of Economics, Duke University
This fantastic book provides an excellent, highly readable, rigorous introduction to the study of networks. This book is a must-read for anybody interested in the true richness of human interactions.
Daron Acemoglu, Institute Professor, MIT
All social scientists can learn from Goyal's expansive and beautifully crafted work, a rare but happy balance between technical rigor and the exploration of central economic, political, and social topics.
Mark Granovetter, Joan Butler Ford Professor, Department of Sociology, Stanford University
Networks is a marvelous distillation of thirty years of progress in one of the most active, interdisciplinary, and exciting areas in social science. Its scope is unmatched. It is indispensable for any scholar working on networks in the social sciences and beyond.
Benjamin Golub, Professor of Economics, Northwestern University
We are surrounded by networks, often intangible, that shape our opinions, ideas, and actions. Goyal provides a rigorous and accessible guide to understanding how managers and policy makers can incorporate these effects into their strategy. A must-read for anyone interested in business and management studies.
Andrea Galeotti, Professor of Economics, London Business School
Networks is as stunning in breadth as it is in clarity. Seamlessly integrating mathematical models with empirical data, lab experiments, and fascinating historical accounts, this book could serve as the primary text for a variety of network science courses, both basic and advanced, as well as a valuable resource for researchers.
Duncan Watts, Stevens University Professor, University of Pennsylvania
Networks of production, financial, transport and other relationships should be at the center of our understanding of the modern economy. This outstanding advanced undergraduate textbook is centered around these networks.
Stephen Morris, Peter A. Diamond Professor of Economics, MIT
Knowing something about networks is now essential for economists and powerful methods have been developed in recent years for studying them. Sanjeev Goyal is a central figure in the development of these. In Networks, Goyal shares his expertise in a way that will make the ideas accessible to a wide range of backgrounds. It will become a standard reference for years to come.
Tim Besley, Professor of Economics and Political Science & W. Arthur Lewis Professor of Development Economics, London School of Economics