Diffusion of Innovation (DOI) theory postulates how new ideas, products, technologies, and/or practices spread within a population or between groups over time. It offers a conceptual framework for understanding how new ideas are communicated, take hold, and get transmitted throughout a social system. Diffusion research is rooted in social sciences, including anthropology, epidemiology, and sociology. An innovation in its own right, DOI theory has found empirical applications in a wide array of academic disciplines including criminology, economics, education, and political science. This entry traces the emergence of DOI, summarizes the core elements of DOI theory, and highlights the factors that influence the DOI. Potential limitations and drawbacks to the use of DOI are highlighted, and as is the methodological approach of social network analysis ...

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