International Laboratory for Applied Network Research (ANR-Lab) was established in 2014 under the scientific supervision of Stanley Wasserman (Ph.D., University of Indiana) - a well-known scientist, one of the "founding fathers" of Social Network Analysis as an independent discipline. Since 2018, Stanley Wasserman is an associate member of the Laboratory. The position of the Laboratory scientific advisor moved to another internationally recognized researcher in the field of Social network analysis, Anuška Ferligoj (Ph.D., University of Ljubljana). Another well-known Slovenian scientist in SNA, Vladimir Batagelj (Ph.D., University of Ljubljana), is a leading researcher of the Laboratory.
The Laboratory includes 30 permanent employees representing various fields - Sociology, Political Science, Economics, Mathematics, Statistics, Management, Computer Linguistics, and Computer Science. They all come together based on using the methodology of Network Analysis in their research projects. The work in the ANR-Lab is organized so that there are more experienced project managers who already have scientific degrees being in charge of different thematic areas and "wide" projects. Young researchers and research assistants are working under their guidance, which can also conduct their research project (graduate qualification work or thesis).
The purpose of the ANR-Lab as a research organization is to develop and test new methods for analyzing network data and to apply them in empirical research in various scientific fields. Therefore, research projects of the employees are focused on such issues as application of statistical methods in Network Analysis, the study of network dynamics in time, analysis of interactions in scientific collectives, organizations, social movements, and informal groups, spread of information and analysis of individuals' behavior in media and online social networks.
Along with the research, the Laboratory solves several additional tasks:
- organizing and promoting the direction of network research in Russia
- training of students and young researchers
- increasing the internationalization of the Higher School of Economics
In this regard, the Laboratory regularly organizes scientific seminars for joint discussion of projects and their presentation to a broad audience and summer schools and special events for advanced training with leading experts in SNA. ANR-Lab's members regularly attend scientific conferences and events and have several scientific publications in their research areas. Since its foundation, the Laboratory has been a regular organizer of its sections at the Sunbelt Conference of the International Network for Social Network Analysis (INSNA) and the NRU HSE April Conference on Economic and Social Development. Besides that, the Laboratory members try to popularize the direction of Network Analysis on the Russian market of applied research. They are engaged in the implementation of commercial research projects on various topics.
The Laboratory cooperates with several Russian and foreign scientists, research teams, and organizations working in the field of Network Analysis, including the Analytical Center for the Government of the Russian Federation, SAS, the University of Ljubljana, the Northwestern University of the USA, the University of Indiana and others.
Since September 2017, the Laboratory has launched its own Master's Program "Applied Statistics with Social Network Analysis," in which two courses now have 40 students. The teachers of the program are leading foreign scientists in the fields of Statistics and Network Analysis.
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