Coffee Hour with Kathleen M. Carley: Dynamic Network Analysis and Big Data

Friday, December 2, 2016 - 3:30pm
Refreshments are offered in 319 Walker Building at 3:30 p.m. The lecture begins in 112 Walker Building at 4:00 p.m.

Dynamic Network Analysis
An example of Dynamic Network Analysis. Image from


This week's Coffee Hour lecture is co-sponsored by the Penn State Institute for CyberScience.

About the talk

Our ability to understand and predict socio-cultural activity is being transformed by the exponential growth in big data available on the web – both social media data as well as open government and organizational records. Analysis of such data has the potential to create the timely and detailed information needed to improve crisis response and so save lives and goods, improve community resilience, support early identification of security threats and decrease social-cyber attacks. Across all these areas there are a set of common key methodological challenges are driven by the nature of the data: “wide” data, sampled data, and geo-temporal evolving data. These data challenges mean that despite there being more data than ever before, our ability to extract meaningful information and make predictions is limited, perhaps increasingly so, by the growth of false information, the trust that is placed in the analytical results, and the need for improved scalable technologies for assessing dense dynamic networks. In this presentation the promise of the new big data science for social behavior is described as well as the challenges that need to be considered from a network science perspective. These point will be illustrated using a variety of examples related to early tsunami warning in Indonesia, crisis response in Libya and the Arab Spring, global cyber security, and threat group detection.

About the speaker

Kathleen CarleyKathleen M. Carley is a professor of computer science in the Institute for Software Research, IEEE Fellow, and director of the Center for Computational Analysis of Social and Organizational Systems at Carnegie Mellon University. She joined Carnegie Mellon in 1984 as an assistant professor of sociology and information systems. In 1990 she became an associate professor of sociology and organizations; in 1998 a professor of sociology, organizations, and information technology; and in 2002 attained her current role as professor of computation, organization, and society. She is also the CEO of Carley Technologies Inc. aka Netanomics. Carley’s research combines cognitive science, sociology, and computer science to address complex social and organizational issues. Her most notable research contribution was the establishment of Dynamic Network Analysis (DNA) – and the associated theory and methodology for examining large high dimensional time variant networks. Her research on DNA has resulted in tools for analyzing large‐scale dynamic networks and various multi‐agent simulation systems. Her group has developed tools for extracting sentiment, social and semantic networks from social media and other textual data (AutoMap), simulating epidemiological models (BioWar), simulating covert networks (DyNet), and simulating changes in beliefs and practice given information campaigns (Construct). Her ORA system is one of the premier network analysis and visualization engines supporting geo‐temporal analysis of social network and metanetwork data. It is used worldwide and at several of the combatant commands. Illustrative projects include assessment of IRS outreach activities, assessment of impact of NextGen on airline re‐rerouting, counter‐terrorism modeling, counter‐narcotics modeling, assessment of design of public‐health departments, mapping the global cyber‐attack network, and social media based assessment of crises such as Benghazi, Darfur, and the Arab Spring.

Contact us

Penn State encourages qualified persons with disabilities to participate in its programs and activities. If you anticipate needing any type of accommodation or have questions about the physical access provided, please contact Angela Rogers in advance of your participation or visit.

Angela Rogers  office: 814-865-2493 email:

Coffee Hour