## Posts filed under ‘Network thoughts’

### Why Anchorage is not (that) important: Binary ties and Sample selection

A surprising finding when analysing airport networks is the importance of Anchorage airport in Alaska. In fact, it is the most central airport in the network when applying betweenness! I do not believe this finding is completely accurate due to two reasons: (1) there is a potential for measurement error when not including tie weights (i.e., assigning the same importance to the connection between London Heathrow and New York’s JFK as to the connection between Pack Creek Airport and Sitka Harbor Sea Plane Base in Alaska), and (2) relying on US data only leads to sample selection as the airport network is a global system. This post highlights how to use a weighted betweenness measure as well as the extent of the sample selection issue.

### Degree Centrality and Variation in Tie Weights

A central metric in network research is the number of ties each node has, degree. Degree has been generalised to weighted networks as the sum of tie weights (Barrat et al., 2004), and as a function of the number of ties and the sum of their weights (Opsahl et al., 2010). However, all these measures are insensitive to variation in the tie weights. As such, the two nodes in this diagram would always have the same degree score. This post showcases a new measure that uses a tuning parameter to control whether variation should be taken favourable or discount the degree centrality score of a focal node.

### Closeness centrality in networks with disconnected components

A key node centrality measure in networks is closeness centrality (Freeman, 1978; Wasserman and Faust, 1994). It is defined as the inverse of farness, which in turn, is the sum of distances to all other nodes. As the distance between nodes in disconnected components of a network is infinite, this measure cannot be applied to networks with disconnected components (Opsahl et al., 2010; Wasserman and Faust, 1994). This post highlights a possible work-around, which allows the measure to be applied to these networks and at the same time maintain the original idea behind the measure.

### Local clustering coefficient for two-mode networks

Similar to the motivation of the global clustering coefficient that I proposed in Clustering in two-mode networks, the local clustering coefficient is biased if applied to a projection of a two-mode network. It is biased in the sense that the randomly expected value is not obtained on the projection of a random two-mode network. To overcome this methodological bias, I redefine the local clustering coefficient for two-mode networks. The new coefficient is a mix between the global clustering coefficient for two-mode networks and Barrat’s (2004) local coefficient for a weighted one-mode network. The coefficient is tested on Davis’ (1940) Southern Women dataset.

The content of this post has been integrated in the tnet manual, see Clustering in Two-mode Networks.

### Online Social Network-dataset now available

The Online Social Network-dataset used in my Ph.D. thesis is now available on the Dataset-page. This network has also been described in Patterns and Dynamics of Users’ Behaviour and Interaction: Network Analysis of an Online Community and used in Prominence and control: The weighted rich-club effect and Clustering in weighted networks. The network originate from an online social network among students at University of California, Irvine. The edgelist includes the users that sent or received at least one message during that period (1,899). A total number of 59,835 online messages were sent among these over 20,296 directed ties.

The content of this post has been integrated in the tnet manual, see Datasets.

### Similarity between node degree and node strength

This post explores the relationship between node degree and node strength in an online social network. In the online social network, heterogeneity in nodes’ average tie weight across different levels of degree had been reported. Although degree and average tie weight are significantly correlated, this post argues for the similarity of degree and node strength. In particular, high pair-wise correlation between degree and strength is found. In addition, power-law exponents of degree distributions and strength distribution are reported. The exponents are strikingly similar, in fact, they are almost identical.

### Clustering in two-mode networks

Many network dataset are by definition two-mode networks. Yet, few network measures can be directly applied to them. Therefore, two-mode networks are often projected onto one-mode networks by selecting a node set and linking two nodes if they were connected to common nodes in the two-mode network. This process has a major impact on the level of clustering in the network. If three or more nodes are connected to a common node in the two-mode network, the nodes form a fully-connected clique consisting of one or more triangles in the one-mode projection. Moreover, it produces a number of modeling issues. For example, even a one-mode projection of a random two-mode network with same number of nodes and ties will have a higher clustering coefficient than the randomly expected value. This post represents an attempt to overcome this issue by redefining the clustering coefficient so that it can be calculated directly on the two-mode structure. I illustrate the benefits of such an approach by applying it to two-mode networks from four different domains: event attendance, scientific collaboration, interlocking directorates, and online communication.

The content of this post has been integrated in the tnet manual, see Clustering in Two-mode Networks.

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