A Social Network Model for Innovation in Early Aviation History

  • Francis C. MoonEmail author
Conference paper
Part of the History of Mechanism and Machine Science book series (HMMS, volume 15)


Using data from many historical studies of early aviation, we present evidence that early advances in aviation were the result of an evolving social network with more than eighty nodes and over three hundred links. The node-link distribution is shown to be similar to a scale-free, power law behavior, characteristic of modern social networks such as the World-Wide-Web. This study suggests that technical innovation and invention in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries flourished through complex social networks commonly assumed to be unique to the twenty-first century.


Social Network Theory Social Network Model Complex Social Network Wright Brother History Network 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer Netherlands 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Sibley School of Mechanical and Aerospace EngineeringCornell UniversityIthacaUSA

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