Infering and calibrating triadic closure in a dynamic network

Mantzaris, Alexander Vassilios and Higham, Desmond; (2013) Infering and calibrating triadic closure in a dynamic network. In: Temporal networks. Springer, Berlin.

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In the social sciences, the hypothesis of triadic closure contends that new links in a social contact network arise preferentially between those who currently share neighbours. Here, in a proof-of-principle study, we show how to calibrate a recently proposed evolving network model to time-dependent connectivity data. The probabilistic edge birth rate in the model contains a triadic closure term, so we are also able to assess statistically the evidence for this effect. The approach is shown to work on data generated synthetically from the model. We then apply this methodology to some real, large-scale data that records the build up of connections in a business-related social networking site, and find evidence for triadic closure.