Special issue on 'Network Analysis' Preface by the Guest Editors

Anuška Ferligoj, Vladimir Batagelj
2011 Advances in Data Analysis and Classification  
Network analysis has attracted considerable interest from the social, behavioral and other science communities in recent decades. This interest can be attributed to the importance and need to analyze (e.g., social) relationships among units, to detect any underlying structural patterns, and to infer implications of these relationships. Wasserman and Faust (1994) pointed out that the network perspective allows new leverage for answering standard social and behavioral science research questions
more » ... giving precise formal definitions to aspects of the political, economic, or social environment. In the context of social network analysis, 'environment' is expressed by patterns or regularities in relationships among interacting units. While the origins of social network analysis can be found in sociometry (Moreno 1934), the social psychology of groups, and various sociological and social anthropological studies of factories and communities, in the last decade the development of network analysis was also influenced by statistical approaches from physics (e.g., scale-free networks and the power law as well as mean field theory) and by applications in the context of the internet, e-commerce, and Web 2.0. Already in 1978 the International Network for Social Network Analysis (INSNA) was formed in order to foster exchange of information and mutual intellectual support. It publishes the newsletter Connections and organizes the International Sunbelt Conference each year. In this context a Workshop on Social Network Analysis: Models and Methods for Relational Data (ARS'09) was held at the University of Salerno (Italy) on 13
doi:10.1007/s11634-011-0089-4 fatcat:vkhhdby6fvho3bzvk6vmybdycq