Friday, April 22, 2005

An OD guru's bibliography of social network analysis

As happy hour gathers steam this Friday afternoon, let's raise a pint to Jim Murphy, leader of the Massachusetts Bay OD Learning Group. And if you're looking for an especially good pint to raise, may I commend to you Jim's beer website.

Even though Patti Anklam and I thought we had the bases covered with our own SNA bibliography, Jim found a few gems worth adding. For two ends of the spectrum, see Verna Allee's article from OD Practitioner, and then look at Ulrike Gretzel's site, which is really something.

And so without further ado, here are links to and descriptions of interesting SNA sites, in the inimitable words of Jim Murphy:

Verna Allee, “Knowledge Networks and Communities of Practice”
OD Practitioner article; mostly on CoP with some SNA

Albert Laszlo Barabasi, Linked, New York, Penguin (Plume Book), 2003
Good introduction to network concepts

Ulrike Gretzel, “Social Network Analysis”
Good academic site, with copious links

International Network for Social Network Analysis
Lots of stuff and links

Charles Kadushin, “Introduction to Social Network Theory”
Long, mostly theoretical paper with wide ranging bibliography

Julie Liebeskind et al, “Social Networks, Learning and Flexibility”
Very heavy Institute for Social Science Research paper on social networks in a biotech firm

Public Broadcasting System
Network analysis of al-Qeda

John Scott, Social Network Analysis, Thousand Oaks, Sage Publications, 2000
Handbook with theory and applications

Social Network Analysis Instructional Web Site
Many free items, plus links

Social Networks
Multidisciplinary scholarly journal

SocioSite: Networks, Groups, and Social Interaction
Many links to (mostly distantly) related concepts


Bruce Hoppe said...

Social Network Analysis
Resources for Organizational Development
Compiled April 2005


Patti Anklam
Hutchinson Associates
Harvard, MA

Bruce Hoppe
Connective Associates
Arlington, MA

Good Introductory Books…

The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference, by Malcolm Gladwell. Little, Brown, 2000. (A fun introduction.)

The Hidden Power of Social Networks, by Rob Cross and Andrew Parker. Harvard Business School Press, 2004. (A business-minded overview.)

And Articles

“The People Who Make Organizations Go—or Stop,” by Rob Cross and Laurence Prusak. Harvard Business Review, June 2002, Reprint R0206G.

“A Practical Guide to Social Networks,” by Rob Cross, Jeanne Liedtka, and Leigh Weiss. Harvard Business Review, March 2005, Reprint R0503H.

"Making Invisible Work Visible: Using Social Network Analysis to Support Strategic Collaboration" by Rob Cross, Stephen P. Borgatti, and Andrew Parker. California Management Review, Vol. 44, No. 2, Winter 2002.

“KM and the Social Network,” by Patti Anklam. Knowledge Management Magazine, May 2003.

“Quantum Theory of Trust,” by Karen Stephenson. Booz-Allen’s strategy+business.

“Informal Networks: The company behind the charts,” David Krackhardt and Jeffrey Hanson. Harvard Business Review, July-August 1993.

“How Networks Reshape Organizations for Results,” by Ram Charam. Harvard Business Review, September-October 1991.

“What Creates Energy in Organizations?” by Rob Cross, Wayne Baker, and Andrew Parker. Sloan Management Review, Summer 2003.

Notable Leaders in Social Network Analysis and their Websites

Rob Cross is a professor at the University of Virginia in the McIntire School of Commerce. He specializes in social network analysis and is a leader in applying SNA to business organizations. His homepage is

Valdis Krebs is a management consultant and the developer of InFlow, one of the leading software tools for social network analysis (along with UCINET and NetMiner). He has written an excellent series of white papers on applications of SNA in organizational development, available from his homepage at

Steve Borgatti is a professor at Boston College in the Organization Studies Department. He is the developer of UCINET (the gold standard of SNA software) and is a leading researcher in the field. He also maintains an amazingly extensive library of SNA resources, all available from

The Barr Foundation, New England’s biggest, is advancing the state of the art in applying SNA to nonprofits and philanthropy. They recently unveiled their new slogan: “Using Networks, Knowledge, and Funding for a Better Boston.” Their website includes a list of network-related resources at:

The International Network for Social Network Analysis is the definitive (and primarily academic) community for those interested in social network analysis. It’s website is

Popular Software Tools for Visualizing Social Networks

There are literally dozens of software packages for social network analysis, but three of them stand out for use by the OD professional:

• UCINET is the most popular and full-featured system for social network analysis. It is a comprehensive system designed by academics for academics, with a very steep learning curve that can easily discourage novices. It costs $250. Available at

• InFlow is targeted at businesspeople who only want to see the most important and basic social network analyses. It costs several thousand dollars, which includes telephone-based support of your social network analyses. Available at

• NetMiner is designed for exploratory visual analysis. If you ask who are the key players in an organization, NetMiner draws an interactive picture highlighting them, whereas other packages give you numerical rankings. NetMiner is full-featured like UCINET, with a learning curve just as steep. It costs $950. Available at

Rup3rt said...

Here are the Social Network Analysis software projects
at SourceForge

Probably free and good but chunky.

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