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Home | Seminars and Symposia | Past seminars/symposia: Tuesday, February 28, 2012

DTC Science and Technology Innovators Lecture Series

Statistical Analysis of Network Data


Eric D. Kolaczyk
Department of Mathematics and Statistics
Boston University
Boston, MA

Tuesday, February 28, 2012
4:00 p.m. reception
4:30 p.m. lecture

401/402 Walter Library

View webcast of this lecture

KolaczykOver the past decade, the study of so-called "complex networks" — that is, network-based representations of complex systems — has taken the sciences by storm. Researchers from biology to physics, from economics to mathematics, and from computer science to sociology, are more and more involved with the collection, modeling and analysis of network-indexed data. With this enthusiastic embrace of networks across the disciplines comes a multitude of statistical challenges of all sorts — many of them decidedly non-trivial. In this talk I will present a brief overview of the foundations common to the statistical analysis of network data across the disciplines, from a statistical perspective, in the context of topics like network summary and visualization, network sampling, network modeling and inference, and network processes. Concepts will be illustrated drawing on examples from bioinformatics, computer network traffic analysis, neuroscience, and social networks.


Eric Kolaczyk has been on the faculty in the Department of Mathematics and Statistics at Boston University since 1998, and was faculty in the Department of Statistics at the University of Chicago before that. He also has been visiting faculty at Harvard University and l'Universite Paris VII. Prof. Kolaczyk's main research interests currently revolve around the statistical analysis of network-indexed data, and include both the development of basic methodology and inter-disciplinary work with collaborators in bioinformatics, computer science, geography, neuroscience, and sociology. Besides various research articles on these topics, he has also authored a book in this area: Statistical Analysis of Network Data: Methods and Models (Springer, 2009). Prior to his working in the area of networks, Prof. Kolaczyk spent a decade working on statistical multi-scale modeling. He is a Fellow of the American Statistical Association (ASA), a Senior Member of the Institute for Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), and a member of the Institute of Mathematical Statistics (IMS).