Welcome to my website. I am a postdoc at the Santa Fe Institute. Most of my research has focused on developing and testing a network theory of individual attitudes. My current research focuses on extending this theory by incorporating social network dynamics.
During my dissertation, I developed a network theory of attitudes under the supervision of Han van der Maas, Denny Borsboom, and Frenk van Harreveld at the University of Amsterdam. The basic idea of this theory is that attitudes can be conceptualized as networks of causally interacting attitude elements, such as beliefs, feelings, and behaviors. For example, your attitude toward a politician might consist of judging this politician as competent, charismatic, honest, and moral, feeling proudness and hope about her, and behaviors such as voting for her and convincing others that she is a great politician. These different attitude elements have direct influences on each other and these influences can be represented in a network structure. A central postulate of my network theory of attitudes is that the connections between different attitude elements increase when one thinks about and pays attention to an attitude object. For example, your attitude elements toward the politician become more interdependent when you think about her. Because of this, your overall attitude becomes more stable and extreme.
During my postdoc at the Santa Fe Institute I aim to integrate my network theory on attitudes with work on social network dynamics. This project is supervised by Henrik Olsson and Mirta Galesic. In this project, we focus not only on single attitudes, but on networks of beliefs. A central idea of this project is that individual belief dynamics follow similar principles as social belief dynamics. People simultaneously aim for consistent personal beliefs and for beliefs that are consistent with beliefs of people in their social circle.
You can contact me at j.dalege(at)gmail(dot)com