Journal of the Korean Physical Society

pISSN 0374-4884 eISSN 1976-8524


Published online December 15, 2009

Copyright © The Korean Physical Society.

Wealth Networks with Sharing Earnings and Expanding Trade Volume

GwangIl Kim

J. Korean Phys. Soc. 55(6), 2578 - 2586 (2009)


To explain the distribution of wealth in a society, we propose a growing network modelin which each new node, representing an individual, becomes linked to other nodes.The links in the network represent contracts, which give both nodes chances toincrease their wealth by producing earnings in proportion to the weight of the link,which represents a capacity for production. The two nodes connected by a linkshare these earnings in a given ratio and have chances toincrease the weight of their link. The nodes have intrinsic levels of ability,allocated with a Beta distribution. We analyze the physical and the weighted degrees of the nodes,as well as the income and the wealth of the resulting networks.We show that, in all reasonable situations, these distributions stabilize, exhibiting scale-free tails.We also consider two societies with different ability distributions, while varying two key parameters,the sharing ratio and the rate at which the link weights are increased. As these parameters approach $1$,the range scales expand, and the class of rich individuals becomes larger, andthe poor and middle classes shrink. Finally, we show that the productivity of a network is optimizedwhen the model is fair, meaning thateach local contract is symmetric and the global ability distribution is uniform.

Keywords: Wealth distribution, Complex networks, Sharing ratio, Link weight, Weight increasing ratio, Scale free