You are here

The Sage website, including online ordering services, will be unavailable due to system maintenance on June 14th from 6:00pm -12 midnight PDT. If you need assistance, please contact Sage at 
Thank you for your patience and we apologize for the inconvenience.
Social Network Analysis

Social Network Analysis
History, Theory and Methodology

November 2011 | 272 pages | SAGE Publications Ltd
We live in a world that is paradoxically small and vast: each of us is embedded in local communities and yet we are only a few 'links' away from anyone else in the world.

This engaging book represents these interdependencies' positive and negative consequences, their multiple effects and the ways in which a local occurrence in one part of the world can directly affect the rest. Then it demonstrates precisely how these interactions and relationships form.

This is a book for the social network novice on learning how to study, think about and analyse social networks; the intermediate user, not yet familiar with some of the newer developments in the field; and the teacher looking for a range of exercises, as well as an up-to-date historical account of the field.

It is divided into three sections:

1. Historical & Background Concepts

2. Levels of Analysis

3. Advances, Extensions and Conclusions

The book provides a full overview of the field - historical origins, common theoretical perspectives and frameworks; traditional and current analytical procedures and fundamental mathematical equations needed to get a foothold in the field.

Introduction: What Are Social Networks?

Becoming Familiar with Social Networks
A Brief History of Social Network Analysis
How to Study Social Networks, from Theory to Design
Actor Level in Complete Networks
Actor Level in Ego Networks
Dyad and Triad Levels
Subgroups Level
Network Level
Position and Roles Analysis
PART THREE: Advances, Extensions and Conclusions
Statistical Models for Social Networks
Conclusions and Future of the Field
Appendix 1: Getting Started with UCINET

Appendix 2: Exponential Random Graph Modelling and Longitudinal Modelling through Siena

Appendix 3: Calculating Probability for Transitivity Using Actor-Based Models


Very good discussion of descriptive and inferential network analysis. A must-read for people starting with network analysis in her own research.

Professor Ingo Rohlfing
Political Science, University of Cologne
May 16, 2013

The level at which the subject matter is treated is not appropriate for my graduate and advanced undergraduate Social Network Analysis courses.

Dr John Palesis
Info Systems Computer Sci Dept, Virginia Commonwealth University
April 6, 2013

I have recommended this to students studying research methods as well as dissertation students undertaking network analysis as part of their projects. It is a user friendly guide, which avoids the unnecessary complexity of rival texts and inspires confidence in those considering this as an approach in their work.

Dr Elizabeth Yardley
Education, Law and Social Sciences, Birmingham City University
February 9, 2013

Social networks are taking a central stage in every aspect of today’s globalizing lives. This interconnected world demands a better understanding of networks and their structures. As a consequence plethora of books were written. This recent book sheds light on the history, theory and methodology of social network analysis. It is not only a timely contribution but it also contains fundamental knowledge about various aspects of social network analysis. It begins by introducing the history of the method. In the second part it concentrates on different levels of analyses including actor level, dyad and triad levels, cohesive subgroup level and network level. In every chapter measuring the relevant level and features are given in relation to the relevant literature as well as mathematical calculations. Moreover, it also explains how to use the measurements meaningfully and operationalize them in UCINET and NetDraw. Next chapter (9) deals with positional and role analyses. Subsequently, last part is devoted to both statistical models for advanced students and a very short concluding remarks. It is definitely worth reading and can be used for teaching easily. It is easy to read and follow the author.

Dr Basak Bilecen
Faculty of Sociology, Bielefeld University
August 22, 2012

This is an accessible yet competent introduction to SNA. I will use it in an introductory undergraduate course to research methods. The first chapters describing the broad outlines of the method will make for recommended readings.

Dr Dan Mercea
The Hague School of European Studies, The Hague University
August 4, 2012

This is a great resource that brings some much needed 21st century thinking into the course reading list

Mr Simon Gillings
Institute of Education and Public Services, Gloucestershire University
March 13, 2012

A very nice book that is long needed to teach Social Network Analysis. Many earlier textbooks were either too technical or too shallow. This book is structured nicely and built up in a way so that it can be used efficiently for a course.

Dr Karoly Takacs
Institute of Sociol, Corvinus University of Budapest
December 19, 2011

I was hoping the book was moving a little further towards using SNA i organisational analysis. Though the book is a nice read, it doesnt provide a better text book, than the SNA by John Scott. I am still in a search for a good text book that takes the ONS approach rather than SNA.

Mr Kasper Teilmann
Dept of International Economics & Mgmt, Copenhagen Business School
December 19, 2011

Sample Materials & Chapters

Chapter One

Sage College Publishing

You can purchase this book and request an instructor sample on our US College site:

Go To College Site