Social Network Analysis - Using R

March 5-19, 2021

Institute for the Study of Muslim Civilisations

This online course introduces participants to the conceptual foundations of social network analysis as it has developed within anthropology and provides practical training in generating social network data, formatting those data for a suitable software program and analysing those data using R.


By the end of the course participants will have developed a sound understanding of:

  • How a focus on networks impacts on the unit of analysis and the kinds of questions that can be addressed.
  • The ways in which we can produce network data with real people in the field.
  • The basic operations of R.
  • The basic operations of two R libraries: igraph and sna.

The course costs £75 and £45 for students and AKU-ISMC alumni.  Sessions will run across three weeks in March on consecutive Fridays (5, 12 and 19 March) from 16:30-18:00 each week.


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Course Tutor

Professor Stephen Lyon has a strong track record of computational methods in the social sciences. He was an early adopter of digital field methods in anthropology and has written extensively about managing and analysing field data using computational tools. He is the Editor-in-Chief of Social Science Computer Review (a SAGE journal - and one of the Managing Editors of Structure and Dynamics (an Open Access Journal from the University of California In addition to publishing widely on conflict, politics and kinship using network approaches, he has taught computational methods since 2002 at undergraduate and graduate levels. In his most recent book, Political Kinship in Pakistan: Descent, Marriage and Government Stability (2019 Lexington Books), he illustrates the utility of adopting a network approach in novel ways to understand the role of marriage and family in Pakistani politics.*


The course will be delivered via Zoom. Readings and further details will be provided later upon registration.


*This course will not be recorded.


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Image credit:

S. Lyon