Encyclopedia of Complexity and Systems Science

Living Edition
| Editors: Robert A. Meyers

Social Network Analysis, Graph Theoretical Approaches to

  • Wouter de Nooy
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-642-27737-5_488-3

Definition of the Subject

Social network analysis (SNA) focuses on the structure of ties within a set of social entities or actors, e.g., persons, groups, organizations, and nations, or the products of human activity or cognition such as semantic concepts, web sites, and so on. In a graph theoretical approach, a social network is conceptualized as a graph, that is, a set of vertices (or nodes, units, points) representing social actors and a set of lines representing one or more social relations among them.

A network, however, is more than a graph because it contains additional information on the vertices and lines. Characteristics of the social actors, for instance, a person’s sex, age, and income, are represented by discrete or continuous attributes of the vertices in the network, and the intensity, frequency, valence, and type of social relation are represented by line weight or value, line sign, or line type. Formally (see pp. 94–95, 127–128 in Doreian et al. 2005), a network Ncan...


Network Structure Social Network Analysis Betweenness Centrality Preferential Attachment Structural Hole 
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 Science+Business Media New York 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of AmsterdamAmsterdamThe Netherlands