Simulating network formation through in-person interaction in a limited budget environment
Networking among researchers is deemed important in gathering funds and developing collaborations. For researchers, in-person interactions through academic events such as conferences is still deemed as a prime networking opportunity despite constraints brought by geographical distance and travel cost. In this study, we aim to understand the effect of having limited researcher budget on networking in academic events. We simulated possible researcher-academic events participation for normally-distributed budgets with different values of average and variance. A synthetic network of researchers is created by forming a link whenever two researchers attend the same event. When the average budget is low, a large budget variance would offset the limited means of some by the more extensive travel of an equal minority. We also found that when researchers tend to go to higher-cost events given enough budget, the network contracts.