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Social Networks and HealthModels, Methods, and Applications$
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Thomas W. Valente

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780195301014

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195301014.001.0001

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Exponential Random Graph Models, P* and Actor Oriented Models

Exponential Random Graph Models, P* and Actor Oriented Models

(p.151) 9 Exponential Random Graph Models, P* and Actor Oriented Models
Social Networks and Health

Thomas W. Valente

Oxford University Press

This chapter describes in non-technical terms how researchers can determine whether empirical networks exhibit certain structural properties (centrality, triadic transitivity, etc.) using a statistical test. These models are referred to as exponential random graph models (ERGM), named after the technique used to generate simulated networks, which can then be compared to the observed network in order to statistically assess network properties. The chapter provides an exposition of the actor oriented co-evolution model, which extends the cross-sectional ERGM framework to model longitudinal processes. These models can be used to determine what behaviors drive social network evolution, and whether social relationships influence behavioral changes. Public health examples are used throughout to illustrate concepts.

Keywords:   ERGM, P*, Exponential Random Graph Models, network evolution, network statistics

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