Social and semantic coevolution in knowledge networks

Two knowledge communities are studied: a scientific community made of researchers collaborating to produce publications, and a set of american political blogs producing posts and citing each other.

These two systems are extensively compared regarding (i)  their structural features, (ii) the  regularities we observe in link creation dynamics.

Abstract: Socio-semantic networks involve agents creating and processing information: communities of scientists, software developers, wiki contributors and webloggers are, among others, examples of such knowledge networks. We aim at demonstrating that the dynamics of these communities can be adequately described as the coevolution of a social and a socio-semantic network. More precisely, we will first introduce a theoretical framework based on a social network and a socio-semantic network, i.e. an epistemic network featuring agents, concepts and links between agents and between agents and concepts. Adopting a relevant empirical protocol, we will then describe the joint dynamics of social and socio-semantic structures, at both macroscopic and microscopic scales, emphasizing the remarkable stability of these macroscopic properties in spite of a vivid local, agent-based network dynamics.

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Tags: blogs, scientific community, socio-semantic