Examples of Social Networks and their Impact, Definitions, Measures and Properties: Degrees, Diameters, Small Worlds, Weak and Strong Ties, Degree Distributions
Homophily, Dynamics, Centrality Measures: Degree, Betweenness, Closeness, Eigenvector, and Katz-Bonacich. Erdos and Renyi Random Networks: Thresholds and Phase Transitions,
Poisson Random Networks, Exponential Random Graph Models, Growing Random Networks, Preferential Attachment and Power Laws, Hybrid models of Network Formation
Empirical Background, The Bass Model, Random Network Models of Contagion, The SIS model, Fitting a Simulated Model to Data
Bayesian Learning on Networks, The DeGroot Model of Learning on a Network, Convergence of Beliefs, The Wisdom of Crowds, How Influence depends on Network Position.
The course has some basic prerequisites in mathematics and statistics. For example, it will be assumed that students are comfortable with basic concepts from linear algebra (e.g., matrix multiplication), probability theory (e.g., probability distributions, expected values, Bayes' rule), and statistics (e.g., hypothesis testing), and some light calculus (e.g., differentiation and integration). Beyond those concepts, the course will be self-contained.
The course is self-contained, so that all the definitions and concepts you need to solve the problem sets and final are contained in the video lectures. Much of the material for the course is covered in a text: Matthew O. Jackson Social and Economic Networks, Princeton University Press (Here are Princeton University Press and Amazon pages for the book). The text is optional and not required for the course. Additional background readings, including research articles and several surveys on some of the topics covered in the course can be found on my web page.
The course will run for seven weeks, plus two for the final exam. Each week there will be video lectures available, as well as a standalone problem set and some occasional data exercises, and there will be a final exam at the end of the course for those who wish to earn a course certificate.
Will I get a Statement of Accomplishment after completing this class?
Yes. Students who successfully complete the class (above 70 percent correct on the problem sets and final exam) will receive a Statement of Accomplishment signed by the instructor - and those earning above 90 percent credit on the problem sets and final will earn one with distinction.