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Article: Studying language change using Price equation and Pólya-urn dynamics

TitleStudying language change using Price equation and Pólya-urn dynamics
Authors
Issue Date2012
PublisherPublic Library of Science. The Journal's web site is located at http://www.plosone.org/home.action
Citation
PLoS One, 2012, v. 7 n. 3, article no. e33171 How to Cite?
AbstractLanguage change takes place primarily via diffusion of linguistic variants in a population of individuals. Identifying selective pressures on this process is important not only to construe and predict changes, but also to inform theories of evolutionary dynamics of socio-cultural factors. In this paper, we advocate the Price equation from evolutionary biology and the Pólya-urn dynamics from contagion studies as efficient ways to discover selective pressures. Using the Price equation to process the simulation results of a computer model that follows the Pólya-urn dynamics, we analyze theoretically a variety of factors that could affect language change, including variant prestige, transmission error, individual influence and preference, and social structure. Among these factors, variant prestige is identified as the sole selective pressure, whereas others help modulate the degree of diffusion only if variant prestige is involved. This multidisciplinary study discerns the primary and complementary roles of linguistic, individual learning, and socio-cultural factors in language change, and offers insight into empirical studies of language change. © 2012 Gong et al.
Persistent Identifierhttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/167008
ISSN
2015 Impact Factor: 3.057
2015 SCImago Journal Rankings: 1.395
PubMed Central ID
ISI Accession Number ID
References

 

DC FieldValueLanguage
dc.contributor.authorGong, Ten_HK
dc.contributor.authorShuai, Len_HK
dc.contributor.authorTamariz, Men_HK
dc.contributor.authorJäger, Gen_HK
dc.date.accessioned2012-09-28T02:27:46Z-
dc.date.available2012-09-28T02:27:46Z-
dc.date.issued2012en_HK
dc.identifier.citationPLoS One, 2012, v. 7 n. 3, article no. e33171en_HK
dc.identifier.issn1932-6203en_HK
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/167008-
dc.description.abstractLanguage change takes place primarily via diffusion of linguistic variants in a population of individuals. Identifying selective pressures on this process is important not only to construe and predict changes, but also to inform theories of evolutionary dynamics of socio-cultural factors. In this paper, we advocate the Price equation from evolutionary biology and the Pólya-urn dynamics from contagion studies as efficient ways to discover selective pressures. Using the Price equation to process the simulation results of a computer model that follows the Pólya-urn dynamics, we analyze theoretically a variety of factors that could affect language change, including variant prestige, transmission error, individual influence and preference, and social structure. Among these factors, variant prestige is identified as the sole selective pressure, whereas others help modulate the degree of diffusion only if variant prestige is involved. This multidisciplinary study discerns the primary and complementary roles of linguistic, individual learning, and socio-cultural factors in language change, and offers insight into empirical studies of language change. © 2012 Gong et al.en_HK
dc.languageengen_US
dc.publisherPublic Library of Science. The Journal's web site is located at http://www.plosone.org/home.actionen_HK
dc.relation.ispartofPLoS ONEen_HK
dc.rightsCreative Commons: Attribution 3.0 Hong Kong License-
dc.titleStudying language change using Price equation and Pólya-urn dynamicsen_HK
dc.typeArticleen_HK
dc.identifier.emailGong, T: tgong@hku.hken_HK
dc.identifier.authorityGong, T=rp01654en_HK
dc.description.naturepublished_or_final_versionen_US
dc.identifier.doi10.1371/journal.pone.0033171en_HK
dc.identifier.pmid22427981-
dc.identifier.pmcidPMC3299756-
dc.identifier.scopuseid_2-s2.0-84858016622en_HK
dc.identifier.hkuros222779-
dc.relation.referenceshttp://www.scopus.com/mlt/select.url?eid=2-s2.0-84858016622&selection=ref&src=s&origin=recordpageen_HK
dc.identifier.volume7en_HK
dc.identifier.issue3en_HK
dc.identifier.isiWOS:000302381500106-
dc.publisher.placeUnited Statesen_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridGong, T=35177507200en_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridShuai, L=55078175800en_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridTamariz, M=6603653047en_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridJäger, G=7103330354en_HK

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