Table of Contents Hide
- Goals of Social Network Analysis
- What is a Social Network Analysis – Social Network Analysis Example
- What is a Social Network Analysis – Social Network Analysis Tools
- What is a Social Network Analysis – Social Network Analysis in Data Mining
- What is a Social Network Analysis – How a Social Network can be Represented
- What is a Social Network Analysis – Social Network Graph Example
Communities, groups of people, friends, everyone is connected in one way or the other. These connections and relationships differentiate between different groups of people and communities. These interests can be researched and studied for various reasons. A basic assumption for social network analysis is that society consists of different groups of people who in turn have (or lack) different types of relationships with other people or groups of people.
A group in this context can be a specific person but also groups of people, organizations, companies or countries. A relationship can be a friendship between two people, a collaboration between two companies, or a trade exchange between two countries. The relationships that different groups have with each other form, if you express this graphically, a kind of structure or a network. Social network analysis is a collection of methods for studying and analyzing these structures. Such an analysis contains both qualitative and quantitative elements.
Goals of Social Network Analysis
Social Network Analysis can have different goals and there can be different reasons for choosing to use social network analysis. One reason for using social network analysis is that it is a good method for highlighting structures that may otherwise be difficult to grasp. By using social network analysis to evaluate, for example, a company collaboration, it is possible to make visible how companies collaborate with each other, how much, and which companies are particularly important for the collaboration.
Experts have come out on how to study and research the interests and social interactions of these different groups. Social Network Analysis (SNA) is the process of using graph theory and networks to research and investigate social interactions and social structures. Social Network Analysis works through characterizing groups of people and communities as nodes and connecting them with links. These links can be anything from relationships to interactions.
So that raises the question: What is a Social Network Analysis used for?
We can usually see Social Network Analysis is used to process and visualize these social interactions in how memes are shared, social media networks, work-flow relationships, love-related relationships, social networks, and much more. These visualizations are often represented with sociograms. The nodes are points and the links between them are lines in the visualization of Social Network Analysis through sociograms.
Social Network Analysis has seen its usage and advantages in a lot of sectors. The most prominent one being modern sociology. But it has also seen uprisings in other sectors such as biology, communication studies, history, information science, political science, and much more.
With that said, next up you will learn more about what is a Social Network Analysis, Social Network Analysis Tools, Social Network Analysis in Data Mining, what a Social Network can be represented as, and a Social Network Graph example.
What is a Social Network Analysis – Social Network Analysis Example
Having learned what is a Social Network Analysis, next up we will see and check out a Social Network Analysis example.
One Social Analysis example is using Social Network Analysis to connect and pinpoint relationships and ties between friends and family. With this Social Network Analysis example we can differentiate the behavior between each different person in a friend group or in a family. With the gathered data through Social Network Analysis we can check out and conclude how much one person trusts another person, how much attention a parent provides to his kids in relation to his wife, different interconnected relationships to provide distant relatives or friendships and much more.
Though a great Social Network Analysis example, it only concludes specific groups of people. With the explanation of what is a Social Network Analysis we concluded that it can be used to process the nodes and links in large data sets. So let’s see the bigger advantages in a Social Network Analysis example working with bigger data sets.
Social media has been around for some time now. With what is a Social Network Analysis, this next Social Network Analysis example will be looking into using Social Network Analysis to visualize data for advantages in social media. Millions of people are using social media on a daily basis, so with Social Network Analysis, we can pinpoint all those people in different groups.
These groups can be for anything, from interests to friends to birthdays. The gathered data from the Social Network Analysis can then be used for personal advantages and gains. How? Through advertisements and marketing campaigns. That is why in this Social Network Analysis example we can see that not only do we have visualized connections and data sets, but we can also use them for profit.
Even if you use social media, you can see that a lot of targeted ads are directed only at you. For example, if you are a football player you will get ads for football shoes. This is no mistake. The data for these targeted ads are gathered through Social Network Analysis. Maybe you follow a football player or you have posted pictures of your games. The same can be applied to makeup, music, stock trading, and much more interests.
We checked out what is a Social Network Analysis and all these Social Network Analysis examples, but working through these large data sets cannot be just done with pen and paper through manual labor. So next up we will check out some Social Network Analysis tools that experts use to do Social Network Analysis and visualize said data.
What is a Social Network Analysis – Social Network Analysis Tools
We saw what is a Social Network Analysis and a Social Network Analysis example. Working through the data gathered through connections and relationships with Social Network Analysis can be done with a lot of Social Network Analysis tools. So next up we are going to check out some Social Network Analysis tools that experts are recommending as of 2021.
Tulip is a Social Network Analysis tool that is best used for the visualization of semantic social networks. Based on what is a Social Network Analysis, this framework enables visualization and analyzing data with libraries that support a variety of visualization apps for relational data with a lot of customizations for the needs of its users. Because Tulip is written in C++ it has enabled the development of a lot of different algorithms, data models, graph clustering, domain-specific visualizations, and much more. With the Social Network Analysis tools on the rise, Tulip is continuing to make the reuse of components easy for its users to ensure a continuous flow of progress in the Social Network Analysis Tools.
NetworkX is a Social Network Analysis tool that is best used for the analysis of large graphs with more than 10 million nodes and 100 million links. Based on what is a Social Network Analysis, this Python library is able to support the creation and utilization of the dynamics and the structure for complex networks. NetworkX is a very efficient framework as a tool for Social Network Analysis.
NetworkX has a lot of standard graph algorithms, measures for network structures, and analysis and construction of synthetic networks and random graphs. NetworkX can also be used for drawing networks 3D and 2D or to find subgraphs and k-cores This Social Network Analysis tool is usually used by scientists, physicists, social scientists, academics, and researchers.
Cytoscape is a Social Network Analysis tool that is best used for making advanced modeling and analysis of really large data sets. Based on what is a Social Network Analysis, this tool can make visualizations of complex networks and supports the integration of these visualizations with a lot of different types of attribute data.
Although the Cytoscape tool was firstly made for biological research, now it can be used for other sectors for network visualization and complicated analysis. It can zoom in and zoom out to browse complex networks, it can export networks as JSON files and it can set filters to make selections of subsets of the nodes and links. Cytoscape enables a lot of user customization, as you can customize the colors of the nodes, the links, the borders, etc. Its customization is one of the options that makes it different from other Social Network Analysis tools.
We explored how and what is a Social Network Analysis and the different Social Network Analysis tools that can be of use for working with data sets including a variety of options to make the process and visualizations easier. Next up we will explore a popular sector in Social Network Analysis, and that is Social Network Analysis in data mining.
What is a Social Network Analysis – Social Network Analysis in Data Mining
What is a Social Network Analysis? Social Network Analysis in itself is a really wide term including a lot of processes and sectors from a lot of different sections. One such section is Data Mining.
Social Network Analysis in Data Mining is an occurrence that cannot be ignored. Social Network Analysis works with analyzing connections of common relations of interests like trust, friendship, hobbies in data sets. Data Mining is focused on collecting said data sets using various means for the mining and collection of said data.
Social Network Analysis is used on a lot of different occasions, some of those being advertisements, marketing strategies, product marketing, etc. This leads to connections and relations in groups of people being subject to targeted ads and such. But how can we get those data sets of interests, relations, and connections based on what is a Social Network Analysis?
That is where Social Network Analysis in Data Mining appears. Scraping and mining data using various means is key in creating the data sets that will be used in Social Network Analysis to create the relations needed for marketing strategies.
With this, we can conclude that the rise of Social Network Analysis has provided for a lot of different Data Mining techniques to be created and used for personal gains and profit. Although we have provided one example of Social Network Analysis in Data Mining, these 2 sectors can be connected and used in other Social Network Analysis examples, like in a democracy, political sociology, and so on.
With what is a Social Network Analysis and Social Network Analysis in Data Mining out of the way, we can continue to explore the space of Social Networks and how a Social Network can be represented as.
What is a Social Network Analysis – How a Social Network can be Represented
With the explanation on what is a Social Network Analysis, which is the practice of conceptualizing and visualizing social networks of people as graphs and the analysis of those graphs. So next we are going to check out Social Networks, what they are, and how a Social Network can be represented as.
A Social Network is a social structure that represents communities, groups of people, or sometimes individuals. As we previously discussed, the general visualization of Social Networks can be done by representing people as points or nodes and the connections of those nodes as links to represent a relationship in a graph. The visualization of the graphs is how a Social Network can be represented as.
A social network can be represented as a graph, and those resulting graphs reveal connections and relations between groups of people. Small Social Networks are easier to analyze visually. These visualizations in small Social Networks provide a means to recognize patterns of connections and find out more about nodes (points) which can have an important part in some relations and connections between other nodes.
But if a Social Network continues to grow and become larger, it is of utmost importance to apply graph analytic techniques which will process the nodes, connections and the whole graph with computing power. That is why a Social Network can be represented as a graph, as other means, like tables, have proved to be less useful.
So far we have covered up what is a Social Network Analysis, a Social Network Analysis example, Social Network Analysis Tools, Social Network Analysis in Data Mining and how a Social Network can be visualized as. We saw that a Social Network can be represented as a graph, so for the last segment of this article, we are going to check out a Social Network graph example.
What is a Social Network Analysis – Social Network Graph Example
What is a Social Network Analysis and how is it connected with Social Networks? A Social Network can be represented as a graph, so to understand the representation better, we will check out a Social Network graph example.
As to not make matters complicated, we will check out a small Social Network graph example instead of a large Social Network graph example. One such small Social Network graph example is a graph on an individual’s hobbies based on social media.
Let’s imagine a person called John. John will be our point, our node in the Social Network graph example. So let’s say that John is interested in online gaming. So he will follow gamers on his social media. With that, we can form lines and connections with John and gaming. We can advance this process further by saying that he is following gamers who play different genres of games. So now we can pinpoint our node (John) with lines (connections) to those genres of games and we have a fully functional Social Network graph example for one person on social media.
This is just one small Social Network graph example of what is a Social Network Analysis, because imagine the scope of Social Network Analysis for each individual using social media. Here is where we can see Social Network Analysis in Data Mining be used.