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Hi. For those of you working on personal networks, using EgoNet or
thinking of using it, we worked with software author MdLogix recently to
update the software and add a randomization feature that will allow the
program to randomly sample the list of alters originally solicited.
Research shows that personal network structural measures remain similar
for randomly generated subsamples (with a minimum n, depending on which
measure, as few as 12 for some, as many as 25 for others) of the orginal
personal network (of approximately 45 individuals).
This feature will decrease informant burden by more than half when using
the program to elicit networks, especially if you're interested in
personal network structure and not needing all of the ties. Unfortunately,
I don't think it will make it any easier to conduct methodological
research on the effect of sampling on personal networks, because once
you've collected reduced amounts of data, you don't have the data for each
individual in each personal network from which to sample--you've only got
the already sampled (and smaller) network.
Eric C. Jones, Ph.D.
Department of Anthropology
University of North Carolina at Greensboro
426 Graham Building
Greensboro NC 27412-5001
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