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For those interested in the debate about the role of preferential attachment as a mechanism for human sexual
network formation, Jamie Jones and I had a piece come out in Nature last week on it.
It is addresses the measurement of the empirical support for so called "scale-free" network models for sexual networks, and the statistical methodology developed can be applied generally.
The cite is: "Sexual contacts and epidemic thresholds" Nature, 423, 6940, 605-606.
For those with access to an electronic subscription, the link is:
The real work is in the Proceedings of the Royal Society:
"An assessment of preferential attachment as a mechanism for human sexual
network formation" Proceedings of the Royal Society, B, 2003, 270, 1123-1128
and later work on the website www.csss.washington.edu/Papers. The whole debate revolves around rather basic statistical issues, but has ignited a some controversy. There is a response following the article from prior authors in this area, and a longer article by them at:
We have a reply at www.csss.washington.edu/Papers/wp31.pdf
Mark S. Handcock
Professor of Statistics and Sociology
Department of Statistics, C014-B Padelford Hall
University of Washington, Box 354322 Phone: (206) 221-6930
Seattle, WA 98195-4322. FAX: (206) 685-7419
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