A number of chapters are devoted to studying social process mediated by networks. Topics here include opinion formation, diffusion of information and disease, and learning. There are also chapters devoted to financial contagion and systemic risk, motivated in part by the recent financial crises. Another section discusses communities, with applications including social trust, favor exchange, and social collateral; the importance of communities for migration patterns; and the role that networks and communities play in the labor market.
A prominent role of networks, from an economic perspective, is that they mediate trade. Several chapters cover bilateral trade in networks, strategic intermediation, and the role of networks in international trade. Contributions discuss as well the role of networks for organizations. On the one hand, one chapter discusses the role of networks for the performance of organizations, while two other chapters discuss managing networks of consumers and pricing in the presence of network-based spillovers.
Finally, the authors discuss the internet as a network with attention to the issue of net neutrality.