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Types of Social Networks Analysis

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Social networks are the networks that depict the relations between people in the form of a graph for different kinds of analysis. The graph to store the relationships of people is known as Sociogram. All the graph points and lines are stored in the matrix data structure called Sociomatrix. The relationships indicate of any kind like kinship, friendship, enemies, acquaintances, colleagues, neighbors, disease transmission, etc. 

Social Network Analysis (SNA) is the process of exploring or examining the social structure by using graph theory. It is used for measuring and analyzing the structural properties of the network. It helps to measure relationships and flows between groups, organizations, and other connected entities. We need specialized tools to study and analyze social networks.

Basically, there are two types of social networks:

  • Ego network Analysis
  • Complete network Analysis

1. Ego Network Analysis

Ego network Analysis is the one that finds the relationship among people. The analysis is done for a particular sample of people chosen from the whole population. This sampling is done randomly to analyze the relationship. The attributes involved in this ego network analysis are a person’s size, diversity, etc.  

This analysis is done by traditional surveys. The surveys involve that they people are asked with whom they interact with and their name of the relationship between them. It is not focused to find the relationship between everyone in the sample. It is an effort to find the density of the network in those samples. This hypothesis is tested using some statistical hypothesis testing techniques.

The following functions are served by Ego Networks:

  • Propagation of information efficiently.
  • Sensemaking from links, For example, Social links, relationships.
  • Access to resources, efficient connection path generation.
  • Community detection, identification of the formation of groups.
  • Analysis of the ties among individuals for social support.

2. Complete Network Analysis

Complete network analysis is the analysis that is used in all network analyses. It analyses the relationship among the sample of people chosen from the large population. Subgroup analysis, centrality measure, and equivalence analysis are based on the complete network analysis. This analysis measure helps the organization or the company to make any decision with the help of their relationship. Testing the sample will show the relationship in the whole network since the sample is taken from a single set of domains.  

Difference between Ego network analysis and Complete network analysis:

The difference between ego and complete network analysis is that the ego network focus on collecting the relationship of people in the sample with the outside world whereas, in Complete network, it is focused on finding the relationship among the samples.  

The majority of the network analysis will be done only for a particular domain or one organization. It is not focused on the relationships between the organization. So many of the social network analysis measure uses only Complete network analysis.

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Last Updated : 03 Feb, 2022
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