Complex networks at SIDEER symposium

February 24, 2014

sideerNetwork science is a fiercly multi-disciplinary undertaking these days. This is again confirmed by the SIDEER symposium on ‘Exploring real world networks: from genes to ecosystems’. The programme lists a few well-known names in network science (including Shlomo Havlin who co-developed the interesting ‘networks of networks’ concept for understanding the inter-dependence of networks), and it also includes a few humanities topics. No history or archaeology as far as I know. Still, this event might be of interest to some readers of this blog.

When? 11-13 March 2014
Where? Ben Gurion University of the Negev, Midreshet Ben Gurion, Israel
More info online.

The complexity of real world systems, from the molecular level of gene complexes all the way up to large scale dynamics of ecosystems and social structures, can be captured by network analysis. The emerging discipline of complex network analysis studies the topologies of the networks of complex interactions amongst many participants of a given system. By doing so, insights and patterns, undetected at the individual level, can be revealed and analyzed at the network level. The Sixth Annual SIDEER Symposium will focus on the latest theory and methods of network analysis aimed at studying networks found in the real world, as well as interesting implementation of network analysis in varied scientific fields such as gene networks, social networks in humans and animals, ecological-epidemiological networks, climatic networks and many more.

CFP European Conference on Social Networks

February 19, 2014

uabEurope now has its own social networks conference! It emerged out of the annual ASNA and UKSNA conferences. My new employer, the Algorithmics group of the University of Konstanz, is also one of the partners of this new initiative. What’s more, my new boss Prof. Ulrik Brandes will give a keynote talk at the meeting. All of this makes me very confident that archaeological papers will be more than welcome at the event, so go ahead and submit! More information below or on the conference website.

The 1st European Conference on Social Networks (EUSN, will be held at the Faculty of Arts, Autonomous University of Barcelona (UAB) on July 1-4, 2014.
This European conference replaces the annual ASNA and UKSNA conference in 2014, having received a regional conference endorsement by INSNA.
In this occasion the EUSN will pay special attention to Latin American researchers on social networks in order to foster the creation of a regional conference also in Latin America.
The EUSN is organized by the research group egolab-GRAFO (Social and Cultural Anthropology Department), with the support of the Dean of the Faculty of Arts, the Algorithmics Group from the University of Konstanz, the Centro de Investigaciones Sociológicas (CIS), the Department of Educational and Cultural Sociology from the University of Cologne, and the Laboratory of Personal Networks and Communities (LRPC), University of Sevilla. Other Departments and Institutes from the UAB that support the Conference are the Centre for Sociological Studies of Daily Life and Work (QUIT-IEE) of the Department of Sociology, and the Institute of Environmental Science and Technology (ICTA), among others.

All the conference information and more can be found at:
If you have any questions regarding the scientific program (submission procedure etc), please do not hesitate to contact

CFP Arts, Humanities, and Complex Networks

February 17, 2014

ahcn2014The arts, humanities, and complex networks satellite conference at netsci has announced its CFP. I presented at it once and it provides a very stimulating multi-disciplinary environment to present humanities/network related research. A number of videos of previous years’ events are available online and many of the talks have been published as short papers in the MIT-press journal Leonardo and as an e-book. More information can be found below and on the event website.

We are delighted to invite submissions for

Arts, Humanities, and Complex Networks
— 5th Leonardo satellite symposium at NetSci2014

taking place in Berkeley at the Clark Kerr Campus of the University of California,
on Tuesday, June 3, 2014.

For submission instructions please go to:

Deadline for submission: March 28, 2014.
Notifications of acceptance will be sent out by April 7, 2014.

For the fifth time, it is our pleasure to bring together pioneer work in the overlap of arts, humanities, network research, data science, and information design. The 2014 symposium will follow our established recipe, leveraging interaction between those areas by means of keynotes, a number of contributions, and a high-profile panel discussion. In our call, we are looking for a diversity of research contributions revolving around networks in culture, networks in art, networks in the humanities, art about networks, and research in network visualization. Focusing on these five pillars that have crystallized out of our previous meetings, the 2014 symposium again strives to make further impact in the arts, humanities, and natural sciences. Running parallel to the NetSci2014 conference, the symposium provides a unique opportunity to mingle with leading researchers in complex network science, potentially sparking fruitful collaborations. As in previous years, selected papers will be published in print, both in a Special Section of Leonardo Journal and in a dedicated Leonardo eBook MIT-Press:

Confirmed Keynote:
Lada Adamic, Associate Professor, University of Michigan & Data Scientist, Facebook, USA

As in previous years, we will feature three high-profile keynote speakers from the areas of cultural data science, network visualization, and network art.

Best regards,
The AHCN2014 organizers,
Maximilian Schich*, Roger Malina**, Isabel Meirelles***, and Meredith Tromble****

* Associate Professor, ATEC, The University of Texas at Dallas, USA
** Executive Editor at Leonardo Publications, France/USA
*** Associate Professor, Dept. of Art + Design, Northeastern University, USA
**** School of Interdisciplinary Studies, San Francisco Art Institute, USA

Networking Ancient Prosopographies

February 17, 2014

snapProsopographies are lists of people mentioned in ancient sources. There are many of these out there, containing a wealth of information on individuals and fragments of their life stories. The UK’s AHRC has just funded a project that aims to create standards for drawing links between databases of people from Greek and Latin texts. I cannot wait to see some of the project’s first results: such information on people and the way they might have been related is a dream for anyone using a network perspective to the study of antiquity. You can find out more about the project and the team led by Gabriel Bodard on the project website. Here is the press release:

A consortium led by scholars in Digital Humanities at King’s College London has been awarded an AHRC Digital Transformations Big Data grant to develop links between several databases of people from classical antiquity. The SNAP:DRGN project (“Standards for Networking Ancient Prosopographies: Data and Relations in Greco-roman Names”), will work with partners at Oxford, Southampton, Edinburgh, Leuven in Belgium, and Duke in the United States, to create standards for bringing together references that are to the same or related people from ancient Greek and Latin texts.

Scholars in the field of classical prosopography (publishing information about known people, their lives, and their relationships) have produced dozens of different collections, organized by region, time period, or political entity, and differing widely in scholarly approaches and technical standards. Dr Gabriel Bodard, the principal investigator of the project, says, “We can only do this work by working closely with both academic and professional experts in the study of ancient people and names, and information scientists who specialize in networked datasets. All of our work will be based on example data from partner projects who record and collate data from Classical Greece, the Roman Empire, Hellenistic Babylon, Greco-Roman Egypt and the Byzantine world. We’re not attempting to impose new models, but rather to reflect the diverse scholarly practices already in use to enable links between collections of people.”

Dr K. Faith Lawrence, the development lead, says, “This is really exciting work because it offers us the opportunity to apply Big Data methodology to bridge existing collections that are currently restricted to their respective data silos. Linked Open Data offers a very powerful way to bring together distributed knowledge, and especially to define entry points. Projects can refer to a figure, name or office within the classical world using the network of collected information from different sources as an authority. This has already been done very successfully for ancient places, but the possibility for scholars to link person and name authorities has been sadly lagging behind. This project will change that.”

By focusing on the way datasets can be brought together, SNAP embraces wider questions of person-tracking, applicable far beyond the Classical world. Without the important issues of privacy that constrain modern networks, the project is able to reflect on the ubiquity of tracking in the modern day. While initially working with data from the Greco-Roman period, we are in discussion with projects that look at other times and places. We hope that our standards can lead to linking prosopographical and biographical information across historical periods and contemporary data.

CFP seminar linguistic and literary networks

February 12, 2014

esseRecently heard about the below call for papers for a seminar on visualising historical linguistic and literary networks. Might be of interest.


Marina Dossena, Univerrsity of Bergamo, Italy,
John Corbett, University of Macau, Macao SAR,

This seminar to be held as part of the 12th ESSE conference in Kosice, Slovakia (29th August to 2nd September 2014), invites participation from scholars involved in the visualisation of linguistic, literary and historical relationships. There has recently been an upsurge of interest in linguistic and literary cartographies, and in particular the use of digital media to map linguistic change, literary data and historical networks. The seminar offers an opportunity for researchers this area to showcase their work in progress, and to share good practice in the development of methodologies and software. We anticipate that the session will be of interest to those working in the areas of historical corpora, correspondence and social networks, lexicography and the digital humanities.

Abstract Submission:
We invite abstract submissions (max 200 words) for individual paper presentations by 28 February 2014 directly to the conveners ( and ). The following information should be included in the abstracts:

Name & Surname
Title of paper
Equipment needed (all seminar rooms will be equipped with a computer and a projector)

According to the conference guidelines, presenters will be asked to circulate reduced versions of their papers in advance of the seminar, and they will have 15 minutes for presentation and 10 minutes for discussions.Proponents will be informed about the acceptance of their papers by 31 March 2014, and ESSE conference registration will open on 1 April 2014.Please do feel free to contact the seminar conveners in case you have any queries.

ESSE Conference information more generally is available at

With best wishes

John Corbett
Professor of English,
University of Macau

Archaeology session at Sunbelt SNA conference

February 10, 2014

sunbeltThe Sunbelt series of conferences is the traditional venue for the Social Network Analysis community to showcase their new work. Last year it featured an archaeological session for the very first time, organised by Angus Mol and Ulrik Brandes. At this year’s Sunbelt there will again be an archaeological session, this time organised by Viviana Amati and Termeh Shafie. Let’s hope this will become a tradition! If you happen to be in Florida and have the time, drop by the sunbelt conference: 18-23 February in St. Pete Beach, Florida.

The line-up for this session sounds great. You can download the full schedule on the Sunbelt website. Here is the schedule for the archaeology session:

Friday 21 February, 8:40 – 10:20 AM, Blue Heron room

Emma Blake: Networks and ethnicities in early Italy

Jessica Munson: Sociopolitical networks and the transmission of ritual practices in Classic Maya society

John Roberts, Jr., Ronald Breiger, Matthew Peeples, Barbara Mills: Sampling Variability in Archaeological Network Measures

Jonathan Scholnick: Investigating cultural transmission among historic New England gravestone carvers with social network analysis

Mark Golitko: Procurement and distribution of obsidian in prehispanic Mesoamerica, 900 BC – AD 1520: an economic network analysis

Few tickets still available Connected Past Paris

February 5, 2014

TCPThe free tickets to attend The Connected Past conference in Paris on 26 April are going fast but a few of them are still available. So if you would like to attend this event then grab your ticket soon via the registration page.

The Connected Past 2014 Paris is a free one-day satellite conference to CAA 2014 that brings together historians and archaeologists to discuss common themes in network analysis. The full programme with abstracts can be found on the conference website. More info and a short programme are included below.

Hope to see many of you there!

Tom, Claire, and The Connected past steering committee

The Connected Past
A satellite conference at CAA 2014, Paris

Held Saturday April 26th 2014 in Sciences Po, rooms Albert Sorel and Anatole Leroy-Beaulieu, 27 rue Saint-Guillaume, 75007 Paris (metro Saint-Germain-des-Prés or Rue du Bac). Building A on this map.

With the Support of Sciences Po, the DYREM research program, Médialab, the CAA committee, and the French network of historical network analysis.

Organisers: Claire Lemercier (CNRS, Sciences Po, Paris), Tom Brughmans (University of Southampton), The Connected Past steering committee.

The conference will be held immediately after the CAA conference (Computer Applications and Quantitative Methods in Archaeology), also happening in Paris, allowing participants to easily attend both – but participants from other disciplines, especially history, are also most welcome.

The conference aims to:

  • Provide a forum for the presentation of network-based research applied to archaeological or historical questions
  • Discuss the practicalities and implications of applying network perspectives and methodologies to archaeological and historical data in particular
  • Strengthen the group of researchers interested in the potential of network approaches for archaeology and history
  • Foster cross-disciplinary dialogue and collaborative work towards integrated analytical frameworks for understanding complex networks
  • Stimulate debate about the application of network theory and analysis within archaeology and history in particular, but also more widely, and highlight the relevance of this work for the continued development of network theory in other disciplines

There are no attendance fees. Although this event is free of charge, registration is required and the number of places is limited. Registration to the event will open once the final programme is advertised in late November, and places will be allocated on a first-come-first-serve basis.

A “The Connected Past” practical workshop, “Introduction to network analysis for archaeologists” will also be organized during CAA2014 in Paris (see the CAA programme).

All the presentations and posters have been confirmed, but the exact programme is still subject to minor changes

Saturday 26 April

9-9.45 Welcome coffee and introduction

9.45-11 First session: Mobility through networks
Eivind Heldaas Seland: Tracing trade routes as networks: From Palmyra to the Persian Gulf in the first three centuries CE
Henrik Gerding and Per Östborn: Network analyses of the diffusion of Hellenistic fired bricks
Marie Lezowski: Cohesion through mobility : the networks of relics in 17th-century Lombardy

11-11.15 Coffee break

11.15-12.30 Second session: Dynamics and cross-period comparisons
Habiba, Jan C. Athenstädt and Ulrik Brandes: Inferring Social Dynamics from Spatio-Temporal Network Data in the US Southwest
Ana Sofia Ribeiro: Resilience in times of Early Modern financial crises: the case study of Simon Ruiz network, 1553-1606
Marion Beetschen: Scientists in Swiss Committees of Experts (1910-2010): Power and Academic Disciplines Through Networks

12.30-13.45 Lunch break

13.45-15 Third session: Cross-cultural networks
Angus A. A. Mol and Floris W. M. Keehnen: Tying up Columbus: A historical and material culture study of the networks that resulted from the first European voyages into the Caribbean (AD 1492-1504)
Francisco Apellaniz: Cooperating in Complex Environments: Cross-cultural Trade, Commercial Networks and Notarial Culture in Alexandria (Egypt) : 1350-1500
Florencia Del Castillo and Joan Anton Barceló: Inferring the intensity of Social Network from radiocarbon dated Bronze Age archaeological contexts

15-15.15 Coffee break

15-15.50 Fourth session: Political interactions
Stanley Théry: Social network analysis between Tours notables and Louis XI (1461-1483)
Laurent Beauguitte: Models of historical networks: A methodological proposal

15.50-16.45 Final session, including a very short (2 minutes) oral presentation for each poster, discussion of the posters and final general discussion
Posters by:
Thibault Clérice and Anthony Glaise: Network analysis and distant reading: The Cicero’s Network
Damian Koniarek, Renata Madziara and Piotr Szymański: Towards a study of the structure of the business & science social network of the 2nd Polish Republic
Susana Marcos: Familial alliances, social links et geographical network. The example of the province of Lusitania in the Roman Empire (to be confirmed)
Stefania Merlo Perring: The ChartEx Project. Reconstructing spatial relationships from medieval charters: a collaboration between Data Mining and Historical Topography
Sébastien Plutniak: Archaeology as practical mereology: an attempt to analyze a set of ceramic refits using network analysis tools
Grégoire van Havre: Interactions and network analysis of a rock art site in Morro do Chapéu, Bahia, Brazil

16.45 Drinks and informal discussion