Noisy voter models in switching environments

Caligiuri, Annalisa; Galla, Tobias
Physical Review E 108, 044301 (2023)

We study the stationary states of variants of the noisy voter model, subject to fluctuating parameters or external environments. Specifically, we consider scenarios in which the herding-to-noise ratio switches randomly and on different timescales between two values. We show that this can lead to a phase in which polarized and heterogeneous states exist. Second, we analyze a population of noisy voters subject to groups of external influencers, and show how multipeak stationary distributions emerge. Our work is based on a combination of individual-based simulations, analytical approximations in terms of a piecewise-deterministic Markov processes (PDMP), and on corrections to this process capturing intrinsic stochasticity in the linear-noise approximation. We also propose a numerical scheme to obtain the stationary distribution of PDMPs with three environmental states and linear velocity fields.

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