We study the influence of selfish vs. polite behaviours on the dynamics of a pedestrian evacuation through a narrow exit. To this end, experiments involving about 80 participants with distinct prescribed behaviours are performed; reinjection of participants into the setup allowed us to improve the statistics. Notwithstanding the fluctuations in the instantaneous flow rate, we find that a stationary regime is almost immediately reached. The average flow rate increases monotonically with the fraction c\_s of vying (selfish) pedestrians, which corresponds to a “faster-is-faster” effect in our experimental conditions; it is also positively correlated with the average density of pedestrians in front of the door, up to nearly close-packing. At large c\_s , the flow displays marked intermittency, with bursts of quasi-simultaneous escapes. In addition to these findings, we wonder whether the effect of cooperation is specific to systems of intelligent beings, or whether it can be reproduced by a purely mechanical surrogate. To this purpose, we consider a bidimensional granular flow through an orifice in which some grains are made “cooperative” by repulsive magnetic interactions which impede their mutual collisions.
Influence of selfish and polite behaviours on a pedestrian evacuation through a narrow exit: A quantitative characterisation
Alexandre Nicolas, Sebastián Bouzat, Marcelo Kuperman