Centrality-Based Approach to Networks

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Duncan Watts:

“the centrality- based approach to networks is the assumption that networks which seem to be distributed are not really so […] But what if there is no centre? What if there are many "centres", not necessarily coordinated or even “on the same side”? What if important innovations are not generated in the nucleus but in the periphery, where the information-managing capos are too busy to look?

What if small events randomly echo through dark places and trigger, through chance encounters, a multitude of individual decisions, each one made without previous planning, which aggregate into an event which no one – not even the actors themselves – could have foreseen?

In these cases, centrality in the network of individuals, and any centrality whatsoever, will tell us little about the result, because the centre emerges as a consequence of the event itself.”