Duke Computer Science Colloquium

Tools for higher-order network analysis

Speaker:Austin Benson
Date: Wednesday, March 29, 2017
Time: 12:00pm - 1:00pm
Location: D106 LSRC, Duke
Pizza will be served at 11:45.


Networks are a fundamental model of complex systems in biology, neuroscience, engineering, and social science. Networks are typically described by lower-order connectivity patterns that are captured at the level of individual nodes and edges. However, higher-order connectivity patterns captured by small subgraphs, or network motifs, describe the fundamental structures that control and mediate the behavior of many complex systems. In this talk, I will discuss several higher-order analyses based on higher-order connectivity patterns that I have developed to gain new insights into network data. Specifically, I will introduce a motif-based clustering methodology, a generalization of the classical network clustering coefficient, and a formalism for temporal motifs to study temporal networks. I will also show applications of higher-order analysis in several domains including ecology, biology, transportation, neuroscience, social networks, and human communication.


Austin Benson is a PhD candidate at Stanford University in the Institute for Computational and Mathematical Engineering where he is advised by Professor Jure Leskovec of the Computer Science Department. His research focuses on developing data-driven methods for understanding complex systems and behavior. Broadly, his research spans the areas of network science, applied machine learning, tensor and matrix computations, and computational social science. Before Stanford, he completed undergraduate degrees in Computer Science and Applied Mathematics at the University of California, Berkeley. Outside of the university, he has spent summers interning at Google (four times), Sandia National Laboratories, and HP Labs.

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