Identifying sets of key players in a social network

  • Stephen P. BorgattiEmail author


A procedure is described for finding sets of key players in a social network. A key assumption is that the optimal selection of key players depends on what they are needed for. Accordingly, two generic goals are articulated, called KPP-POS and KPP-NEG. KPP-POS is defined as the identification of key players for the purpose of optimally diffusing something through the network by using the key players as seeds. KPP-NEG is defined as the identification of key players for the purpose of disrupting or fragmenting the network by removing the key nodes. It is found that off-the-shelf centrality measures are not optimal for solving either generic problem, and therefore new measures are presented.


Social networks Centrality Cohesion 


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© Springer Science + Business Media, Inc. 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Organization StudiesBoston CollegeBoston

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