Conference "Networks in the Global World" 2018


Two weeks ago, Centre for German and European Studies organized the 4th Conference ‘Networks in the Global World’ - the largest event on network analysis in Eastern Europe.

After setting the ball rolling with six parallel software workshops taught by international experts, the conference kicked off with the official opening and a keynote by one of the leading social network analysts of the world, Tom Snijders, who spoke of the often-overlooked factors that contribute to network dynamics, especially in multilevel networks. The keynote was followed by six parallel sessions on the pivotal issues in the analysis of online social networks, international organizations’ networks in Europe and worldwide, community network structures and hierarchies, valuation networks, and others. At the session on ’Socio-Semantic Networks’, Camille Roth from Sciences Po, Paris, and Centre Marc Bloch, Berlin, one of the conference invited speakers, presented his recent work on socio-informational dynamics inside European online communities.

The second day of NetGloW’18 included eight sessions. Participants discussed statistical, qualitative, and mixed methods in network analysis, social networks in the political domain, economic and trade networks, and others. Among the presentations was a talk by another invited speaker of the conference, Sophie Mützel from University of Lucerne, analyzing how new global scientific categories come into being. The day concluded with a keynote by John Levi Martin from University of Chicago, who used an analysis of interactions between political actors in the Weimar Reichstag (a joint work with Jan Fuhse, Humboldt University Berlin, and Jan Riebling, University of Wuppertal) as a starting point to engage in a discussion on the nature of social action, social relationships, and time, - and the related implications for sociological theory and method.

The last day of the conference featured seven sessions, providing participants with an opportunity to share their expertise on the development of science and technology networks, to discuss network analysis of social and cultural duality, to talk about urban networks and networks in the educational field, to exchange their impressions and ideas with each other. The afternoon keynote by Robin Wagner-Pacifici from New School for Social Research, demonstrated results of her work with Ronald Breiger and John Mohr, analyzing relational networks present in US National Security Strategy reports. The closing plenary session was topped off by Peter Bearman’s presentation of an edge-cutting research that synthesizes social network analysis and cognitive neuroscience to reveal how popularity in small groups can be predicted from neural responses and suggest fundamental implications for social network analysis at large.

Centre for German and European Studies thanks more than a hundred NetGloW’18 participants for being with us during these three intense and fascinating days! Looking forward to seeing you in 2020!

Watch St. Petersburg State University video report about the conference here: