Markus Strohmaier

RWTH Aachen University, Germany

Markus Strohmaier is the Professor for Methods and Theories of Computational Social Sciences and Humanities at RWTH Aachen University (Germany), and the Scientific Coordinator for Digital Behavioral Data at GESIS - Leibniz Institute for the Social Sciences. Previously, he was a Post-Doc at the University of Toronto (Canada), an Assistant Professor at Graz University of Technology (Austria), a visiting scientist at (XEROX) Parc (USA), a Visiting Assistant Professor at Stanford University (USA) and the founder and scientific director of the department for Computational Social Science at GESIS (Germany). He is interested in applying and developing computational techniques to research challenges on the intersection between computer science and the social sciences / humanities.

Modeling minorities in social networks

Homophily can put minority groups in social networks at a disadvantage by restricting their ability to establish links with people from a majority group. This can limit the overall visibility of minorities in the network, and create biases. In this talk, I will show how the visibility of minority groups in social networks is a function of (i) their relative group size and (ii) the presence or absence of homophilic behavior. In addition, the results show that perception biases can emerge in social networks with high homophily or high heterophily and unequal group sizes, and that these effects are highly related to the asymmetric nature of homophily in networks. This work presents a foundation for assessing the visibility of minority groups and corresponding perception biases in social networks in which homophilic or heterophilic behaviour is present.