James Moody
Social Networks
Introduction


"Social Networks" refers to a way of formalizing social relationships so they can be studied systematically.  A social network consists of any set of actors (often people, but also organizations, countries, web pages, families, and many other items) and the relations among those actors (such as friendships, exchanges, communications, etc.).  Social network research uses graph theory to describe the pattern created by actors and their relations, treating actors as nodes in the graph and their relations as edges.  Substantively, people are usually interested in either explaining how certain patterns come to be or how particular relations affect behavior.

Those interested in a general introduction to social networks can check out my course notes / presentations, which are linked from the online syllabus.

My research focuses on social networks in multiple contexts.  These include friendships among adolescents, the correspondence between social networks and neighborhood, the spread of sexually transmitted diseases, and social relations on the Internet.  I am very interested in extending network techniques to large-scale social networks (1000s of nodes), which includes developing efficient methods for sampling networks, and identifying how social networks change over time.

The links below will take you to particular aspects of my research on social networks as well as links to other people doing exciting work in this area.