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quoting: "The question then is how to find these influential
individuals. Kitsak and co say that the way to do this is to study a
quantity called the network's "k-shell decomposition". That sounds
complicated but it isn't: a k-shell is simply a network pruned down to
the nodes with more than k neighbours. Individuals in the highest
k-shells are the most influential spreaders."
Although I might misunderstand what they mean with "pruned down", what's
the difference between this method and the various ways to identify
subgroups as based on nodal degrees? I don't understand the novelty of
this proposed method - perhaps someone can enlighten me? Furthermore,
what happened to the influence- and betweenness-based measures of
centrality? I doubt most network analysts equate the "most influential
spreaders" in a social network with those that have the most number of
connections (i.e. dichotomized degree centrality) in light of the more
"recursive" ways for calculating actor centrality.
Yosem Companys wrote:
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> Individuals Are Not the Most Influential Spreaders in Social Networks*
> /Technology Review (02/02/10)/
> Boston University (BU) researchers have developed a method for
> studying and identifying hubs within social networks. The approach
> emphasizes the location of the individual within the network as
> opposed to the number of connections. "In contrast to common belief,
> the most influential spreaders in a social network do not correspond
> to the best connected people or the most central people," says BU's
> Maksim Kitsak. The researchers found that if a hub exists at the end
> of a branch it will have a minimal impact on the core of the network.
> However, a less connected person strategically placed in the core of a
> network can have significant effects that lead to dissemination
> through a large fraction of the population, Kitsak says. By studying a
> quantity called the network's k-shell decomposition, researchers can
> locate these specially placed individuals, which is the key to
> understanding the dynamics of a network.
> View Full Article <http://www.technologyreview.com/blog/arxiv/24748/?a=f>
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Carl Nordlund, BA, PhD student
Human Ecology Division, Lund university
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