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Commentary: Measuring the Shape of Degree Distributions

Badham, J (2013) Commentary: Measuring the Shape of Degree Distributions Network Science, 1 (2). pp. 213-225.

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Degree distribution is a fundamental property of networks. While mean degree provides a standard measure of scale, there are several commonly used shape measures. Widespread use of a single shape measure would enable comparisons between networks and facilitate investigations about the relationship between degree distribution properties and other network features. This paper describes five candidate measures of heterogeneity and recommends the Gini coefficient. It has theoretical advantages over many of the previously proposed measures, is meaningful for the broad range of distribution shapes seen in different types of networks, and has several accessible interpretations. While this paper focusses on degree, the distribution of other node based network properties could also be described with Gini coefficients.

Item Type: Article
Divisions : Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences > Department of Sociology
Authors :
Date : 28 August 2013
Identification Number : 10.1017/nws.2013.10
Related URLs :
Additional Information : This article has been accepted for publication and will appear in a revised form, subsequent to peer review and/or editorial input by Cambridge University Press, in "Network Science, 1(2): 213-225", published by Cambridge University Press. Copyright 2013 CAmbridge University Press. Available online at:
Depositing User : Symplectic Elements
Date Deposited : 25 Sep 2013 11:36
Last Modified : 26 Jul 2016 10:02

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