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Feedback Economics

This book approaches economic problems from a systems thinking and feedback perspective. By using system dynamics methods (including qualitative and quantitative techniques) and computer simulation models, the contributors apply feedback analysis and dynamic simulation modeling to important local, national, and global economic issues and concerns.

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Unsanctioned Music Sharing on Peer-to-Peer Networks

A new technology in the early 2000s, peer-to-peer (P2P) networks made massive unsanctioned music exchange possible, which had a profound effect on the recording industry. Record labels responded to the emergence of online music-sharing networks with litigation and “self-help measures.” This project adds to our understanding of the conflict within the commercial music industry. We conduct an institutional analysis of the conflict by extending pattern modeling with a formal resource-based model of a representative P2P network. To build the model, we use the system dynamics methodology. The model accounts for complex causal interactions between resources such as bandwidth and music files, private provision of common goods, free-riding, and membership dynamics. In a series of experiments that emulate the offensive against music-sharing networks, our analysis shows that due to the feedback effects, P2P systems might be quite resilient to outside attempts to disrupt them through technical or legal means. The experiments also demonstrate that policies against unsanctioned music exchanges on P2P networks rank differently in their effectiveness based on a selected yardstick.

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