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I thank Brian Keegan (and his unnamed colleague) for this perceptive 
query, and I would like to add an element to the request for scholarly 

I am working on a book on the emergence of cooperation in Spain from the 
late 15th to the mid 17th century. As the size of social networks 
increases, have there been points at which patterns show up within the 
structure that repeat the overall pattern in a similar way, but not 
exactly. I am exploring the idea that these pattern-repeating but 
deviating connections within a larger social network may be the location 
for innovations, which may cascade throughout the entire social network. 
If the cascade destabilizes a control variable of the complex system, 
the system would pass through a phase transition.

Who has written about self-repeating patterns within expanding social 
networks, which are very similar to the overall pattern, but not the 
same? I would be pleased to read about a fractal analysis of such 
"rough" patterns in the real world. Thank you for any assistance.

Best wishes,

Dr. J. B. "Jack" Owens, Ph.D.
Director, Geographically-Integrated History Laboratory
Research Professor of History, Idaho State University, USA
Lead PI, SOCNET Project, CDI, NSF (2009-2013)
Co-coordinator, DynCoopNet Project, TECT, ESF/NSF (2007-2010)
Guggenheim Fellow (2005-2006)
National Endowment for the Humanities Fellow (2004-2005)
E-mail: [log in to unmask]

On 2/14/2012 10:50 PM, Brian Keegan wrote:
>  Christakis's recent Nature paper about networks in hunter-gatherer 
> societies ( ("Social networks and cooperation in 
> hunter-gatherers") prompted a discussion with a colleague about other 
> scholarship on the size or structure of ego or social networks in 
> other historical eras or socio-cultural contexts. Basically is there 
> any scholarship which has tracked the growth or stability social 
> networks with respect to the number of alters or size of networks?
> Thanks!
> Brian
> -- 
> Brian C. Keegan
> Ph.D. Student - Media, Technology, & Society
> School of Communication, Northwestern University
> Science of Networks in Communities, Laboratory for Collaborative 
> Technology

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