A Continuous Threshold Model of Cascade Dynamics

Yaofeng Desmond Zhong, Naomi Ehrich Leonard

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

9 Scopus citations


We present a continuous threshold model (CTM) of cascade dynamics for a network of agents with real-valued activity levels that change continuously in time. The model generalizes the linear threshold model (LTM) from the literature, where an agent becomes active (adopts an innovation) if the fraction of its neighbors that are active is above a threshold. With the CTM we study the influence on cascades of heterogeneity in thresholds for a network comprised of a chain of three clusters of agents, each distinguished by a different threshold. The system is most sensitive to change as the dynamics pass through a bifurcation point: if the bifurcation is supercritical the response will be contained, while if the bifurcation is subcritical the response will be a cascade. We show that there is a subcritical bifurcation, thus a cascade, in response to an innovation if there is a large enough disparity between the thresholds of sufficiently large clusters on either end of the chain; otherwise the response will be contained.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publication2019 IEEE 58th Conference on Decision and Control, CDC 2019
PublisherInstitute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Inc.
Number of pages6
ISBN (Electronic)9781728113982
StatePublished - Dec 2019
Externally publishedYes
Event58th IEEE Conference on Decision and Control, CDC 2019 - Nice, France
Duration: Dec 11 2019Dec 13 2019

Publication series

NameProceedings of the IEEE Conference on Decision and Control
ISSN (Print)0743-1546
ISSN (Electronic)2576-2370


Conference58th IEEE Conference on Decision and Control, CDC 2019

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Modeling and Simulation
  • Control and Optimization


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