Epidemic Potential in Human Sexual Networks: Connectivity and The Development of STD Cores

Tuesday, November 18, 2003 - 1:30pm - 2:20pm
Keller 3-180
James Moody
Research on the spread of many sexually transmitted diseases suggests that infection results from a heterogeneous distribution of infected actors. While infection rates are too low in the population at large to account for epidemic spread, within smaller groups infection rates are high enough to generate outbreaks. This paper shows that network node connectivity provides a natural measure for such STD cores. After describing STD cores and node connectivity, I demonstrate the plausibility of the model with data from prior epidemic outbreaks, discuss the std-core implications of popular large-scale network models, and show how STD cores can develop with small changes in local behavior.