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Branching Processes and Behavioral Choice

Combining Behavioral Choice with a Branching Process Model of Disease

This was my third-year paper. The current draft can be seen here.

Paper Information

“Combining Behavioral Choice with a Branching Process Model of Disease”
Draft Last Updated


Whether a disease outbreak dies out early or expands into a full blown- epidemic depends not only on the average spread of disease, but also on the variation between individuals in how likely they are to spread the disease to others. The source of this variation is, in part, due to the fact that different people have differing levels of contact with others. In a behavioral model in which people choose the level of contact they have with others in response to new of disease outbreak, highly connected people respond qualitatively different from people with few social connections. When transmissibility is high, highly connected people can become fatalistic.