Dinh defends dissertation

Doctoral candidate Ly Dinh successfully defended her dissertation, "Advances to Network Analysis Theories and Methods for the Understanding of Formal and Emergent Structures in Interpersonal, Corporate/Organizational, and Hazards Response Setting," on May 19.

Her committee included Associate Professor Jana Diesner (chair); Assistant Professor Peter Darch; Scott Althaus, professor in the Department of Communication and Department of Political Science, UIUC; and Leysia Palen, professor in the Department of Computer Science and Department of Information Science, University of Colorado Boulder.

Abstract: Network analysis provides valuable theoretical and methodological toolkits to investigate complex systems of social-technical relations. It has been applied to various social science research contexts to understand the mechanisms for individuals and groups to form connections. Furthermore, extant literature finds that networks of social organizing often comprise of structures that are formally specified (i.e., formal) and informally created from unplanned interactions (i.e., emergent). This dissertation builds upon prior literature in network science theories and methods with a goal to examine the formal and emergent structures of organizing in (1) interpersonal, (2) corporate/organizational communication, and (3) hazards response setting. The findings contribute to the growing literature on the theories and applications of network analysis to real-world social networks, with a specific focus on discovering the emergent network patterns and how they are meaningfully different from formal (or expected) structures. The study designs developed in this dissertation also provide frameworks for network-based studies to examine the mechanisms involved in tie formation.

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