Who are the best
spreaders of information in a social network? Best connected
individuals may not be the most influential spreaders. Instead,
location in the network, as defined by the k-shell, determines
influence. Paper: pdf or cond-mat. Press releases:
Science for SEO,
India Times. Collaboration between Bar-Ilan University, Boston
University, Stockholm University, NYU, and CCNY.
Nature Physics 2010. (High resolution
image and cover,
created with the lanet-vi
Recent analysis based on real diffusion data from extensive datasets
including LiveJournal, Facebook, Twitter and publications in APS
journals suggests that k-shell is a better predictor of nodes'
influence in practice, outperforming degree and PageRank. [For datasets see
k-shell index can identify more influential spreaders of influence,
even for networks without complete information of network
structure. In the cases when the global structure is unavailable, we
find that the sum of the nearest neighbors' degrees is a practical
proxy for user's influence. This provides a practical topological
marker for super spreaders of in formation in real applications.
The k-shell structure of LiveJournal social network. Four hubs located in the periphery are highlighted by black squares.
The influence of the spreading process cannot be predicted by degree
reliably. For the LiveJournal network, we compare the influence area
of single nodes with the same degree k = 6902 (nodes A and B) or the
same k-shell index 230 (nodes A and C). In the lower level of the
corresponding plots, nodes' k-shell indexes are marked with different
colors. In the upper level, nodes with green color constitute the
influence area, while the grey nodes are not influenced by the source