Posts Tagged ‘RDMS’

Social Network Analysis and GIScience

Monday, October 6th, 2014

Social Network Analysis(SNA), in my understanding, is to analyze social relationship that can represent any type of link that one individual can have with another individual. There are 2 distinct methods, a quantitative approach and a qualitative approach to conduct the analysis. Each method obviously has its own advantages. Interestingly, in Gmma Edwards’ article, it is argued that a third option, which is a mixed-method approach to network analysis combining both quantitative and qualitative approaches are appropriate for SNA. This was very refreshing article. Especially when it came to my mind that the social network study and GIScience both have common features. Among others, the use of relational database was one of them.

In the SNA, the relationships between actors, such as flow and exchange of resources, the flow of information and ideas, the spatial embedding of network ties, etc. are generated and analysed.

Whereas in GIScience, the relational data are collected, stored and managed as well, but perhaps a different format/method than how it is being done in SNA, and  such software is called as Relational Database Management System(RDMS).

Of course, the objective or the way they use the relational data may slightly differ, but I think that it would be quite interesting to practice SNA by adding the geographic aspect on top of it and visualize it on an actual geographic map to display actors and lines rather than an empty space, for certain subject. That way, it could be easier to figure out a new relationship or a meaningful observation that one couldn’t find it previously.