Spring 2016

Demography 260:
Social Networks

Dennis M. Feehan

feehan@berkeley.edu

Class meetings: Mondays, 10am-1pm Demography Seminar Room
Office hours: by appointment (please send me an email and we can find a time)

Overview

This course provides a broad introduction to the empirical and theoretical study of social networks. We will cover classic and contemporary studies, beginning with fundamental definitions and models, and then moving through a range of topics, likely including models of network formation and structure (homophily, foci, communities); dynamic processes on networks (contagion, influence, and disease models); collaborative networks; online networks; and network sampling and data collection. The course material is intended to be of interest to students from a wide range of disciplinary backgrounds, including demography, sociology, statistics, computer science, and related fields.

Please re-check the syllabus before you start each week’s reading; it will be updated as the semester progresses

Requirements

In addition to reading the material and participating in class discussions, there are three requirements for the class:

NB: Please read each week’s articles in the order they are listed on the syllabus

Week 1 (2/29): Fundamentals and background

Readings to discuss:

We won’t explicitly discuss chapter 7 of the Newman book in class, but it’s also worth reading at some point; it describes several different network measures that are often mentioned in the literature.

Week 2 (3/7): sampling, data collection, statistics

Readings to discuss:

Background and related:

Week 3 (3/14): Connectivity and small worlds

Readings to discuss:

Background and related:

Week 4 (3/28): Social capital and communities

Readings we will discuss:

Also interesting (but we won’t have time to discuss in class):

Week 5 (4/4): Network formation, time

Also interesting (but we won’t have time to discuss in class):

Week 6 (4/11): Time and collaboration, cont.; intro to contagion and influence

Also interesting, but we will not have time to discuss:

Week 7 (4/18): Contagion and influence

Also interesting, but we will not have time to discuss

Week 8 (4/25): Contagion and influence

Also interesting, but we won’t have time to discuss:

Optional wrap-up: