International Laboratory for Applied Network Research (ANR-Lab) was established in 2014 under the scientific supervision of Stanley Wasserman (PhD, 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 lab, and the position of the Laboratory scientific advisor moved to another internationally recognized researcher in in the field of Social network analysis, Anuška Ferligoj (PhD, University of Ljubljana). Another well-known Slovenian scientist in the field of SNA, Vladimir Batagelj (PhD, University of Ljubljana), is a leading researcher of the laboratory.
The laboratory includes 21 permanent employees representing various fields - Sociology, Political Science, Economics, Mathematics, Statistics, Management, Computer Linguistics and Computer Science. They all come together on the basis of use the methodology of Network Analysis in their research projects. The work in the ANR-Lab is organized in a way that there are more experienced project managers who are already have scientific degrees being in charge of different thematic areas and "wide" projects, and young researchers and research assistants working under their guidance, who can also conduct their own 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, 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 a number of 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 wide audience, as well as summer schools and special events for advanced trainings with leading experts in SNA. ANR-Lab`s members regularly attend scientific conferences and events and have a number of scientific publications in their research areas. Since its foundation, the Laboratory has been a regular organizer of its own sections at the Sunbelt Conference of the International Network for Social Network Analysis (INSNA), as well as the NRU HSE April Conference on Economic and Social Development. Besides that, the Laboratory members try to popularize the direction of Network Analysis on Russian market of applied research, and are engaged into the implementation of commercial research projects on various topics.
The Laboratory cooperates with a number of 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”, 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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