Do we search far and wide for love? Not so much, it turns out.
Most heterosexual singles search for a match close to where they live, according to a new paper in Sociological Science by Elizabeth Bruch and Mark Newman, both of the University of Michigan and Santa Fe Institute. Their study is based on a big-data analysis of interactions on a major online dating platform. (The researchers were required not to identify the site as a condition of conducting the research.) Specifically, the study analyzes some 15 million two-way exchanges between heterosexual users on the site. Bruch and Newman use these data points to assess the roles of age, gender, race, and proximity in heterosexual dating markets.