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Stochastics and Statistics Seminar

Degree-degree dependencies in random graphs with heavy-tailed degrees

December 13, 2013 @ 11:00 am

Nelly Litvak (University of Twente)


Mixing patterns in large self-organizing networks, such as the Internet, the World Wide Web, social and biological networks are often characterized by degree-degree dependencies between neighboring nodes. In assortative networks the degree-degree dependencies are positive (nodes with similar degrees tend to connect to each other), while in disassortative networks these dependencies are negative. One of the problems with the commonly used Pearson correlation coefficient, also known as the assortativity coefficient, is that its magnitude decreases with the network size in disassortative networks. This makes it impossible to compare mixing patterns, for example, in two web crawls of different sizes. In this talk we analytically investigate degree-degree dependencies for scale-free graph sequences. In particular, we show that the Pearson’s correlation coefficient is non-negative in the large graph limit when the asymptotic degree distribution has an infinite third moment. Furthermore, we provide examples where the Pearson’s correlation coefficient converges to zero in a network with strong negative degree-degree dependencies, and another example where this coefficient converges in distribution to a random variable. We suggest the alternative degree-degree dependency measure, based on Spearman’s rho, and prove that this statistical estimator converges to an appropriate limit under quite general conditions. These conditions are proved to hold in common network models, such as the configuration model and the preferential attachment model.

MIT Statistics + Data Science Center
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
77 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02139-4307