Bootstrapping under constraint for the assessment of group behavior in human contact networks

Tremblay, Nicolas; Barrat, Alain; Forest, Cary; Nornberg, Mark; Pinton, Jean-François; Borgnat, Pierre
The increasing availability of time- and space-resolved data describing human activities and interactions gives insights into both static and dynamic properties of human behavior. In practice, nevertheless, real-world data sets can often be considered as only one realization of a particular event. This highlights a key issue in social network analysis: the statistical significance of estimated properties. In this context, we focus here on the assessment of quantitative features of specific subset of nodes in empirical networks. We present a method of statistical resampling based on bootstrapping groups of nodes under constraints within the empirical network. The method enables us to define acceptance intervals for various null hypotheses concerning relevant properties of the subset of nodes under consideration in order to characterize by a statistical test its behavior as “normal” or not. We apply this method to a high-resolution data set describing the face-to-face proximity of individuals during two colocated scientific conferences. As a case study, we show how to probe whether colocating the two conferences succeeded in bringing together the two corresponding groups of scientists. DOI:
Research areas:
Year:
2013
Type of Publication:
Article
Journal:
Physical Review E
Volume:
88
Number:
5
Pages:
52812
Month:
November
ISSN:
1539-3755
DOI:
10.1103/PhysRevE.88.052812
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