COMPLEX SYSTEMS

Finding communities in interacting systems

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Science  03 Apr 2015:
Vol. 348, Issue 6230, pp. 88-89
DOI: 10.1126/science.348.6230.88-c

Understanding the underlying behavior of complex interacting systems is a challenging problem affecting the social, life, and physical sciences. Representing components of a system as nodes and assigning weights to the interactions between components can provide a graphical picture of the interacting system. Trying to map out real-life systems that are large, consist of multiple layers, and are dynamic can result in oversimplification, though. De Domenico et al. propose a method based on network flow analysis that can reveal clusters or communities of nodes that are closely connected within and across the various layers of a system. Identifying key communities in a complex interacting system could be crucial in revealing the functional structure underlying the system.

Phys. Rev. X 5, 11027 (2015).

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