Investigation and Modeling of Professional Interpersonal Networks: Transportation Planning and Modeling Community Case Study
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
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AbstractThe purpose of this research is to investigate, acquire knowledge, and better comprehend the transportation planning and modeling community. This task is accomplished through the investigation of existing social and professional networks within this community by constructing and analyzing an abstract network representation of this community. Specifically, this research explores the actors (i.e., professionals, agencies) and their relationships (i.e., ties, interactions, etc.) within the professional interpersonal (social) network where they conduct business on a regular basis. Actors and relationships are represented in terms of a nodes and links within the constructed network. The network is then analyzed in an effort to answer questions such as, who are the actors, where do interpersonal relationships exist, where are social structures found, what does the evolution of this community look like over time, and what can this evolution tell us. This study has collected information from transportation professionals directly associated with the decision-making, planning and/or modeling process within the transportation planning and modeling community. The data is collected through an in-house designed online survey disseminated to the identified target audience. The designed survey is structured to capture information required for the identification of actors and relationships (or entities and ties) within the transportation planning and modeling community. With the network constructed, analysis methods derived from mathematics, computer science and social network analysis fields are implemented to identify local and global patterns, "influential" actors, and collaborative structures as well as examine network dynamics, which transpire within the environment that these transportation professionals navigate, form bonds, and collect information on frequent basis.
Degree ProgramGraduate College