IDENTIFYING INFLUENTIAL AFFILIATIONS IN EVOLVING NETWORKS

 

James Michael Shook

 

Members of a network can be assigned to one or more affiliations or communities. We are investigating the evolution of affiliations in networks in hopes of identifying the more influential ones. To aid us in our goal, we are actively developing a measure of how much the relationship between the members of a network affects the evolution of an affiliation in the network. The idea is that the underlining relationship may not fully explain the evolution of some affiliations. For example, members of a social network that share the same birthday are less likely to know each other when compared to the members that belong to a secret society. Thus, we would suspect that members of the network would only join the secret society if they already knew someone in it. On the other hand, the network members wouldn’t have to know anybody before they join a birthday affiliation. Our research will hopefully yield a ranking of the affiliations in order of their influence on the network.