A new article titled "People Matter: Recent Sociological Contributions to Understanding European Integration from Below", co-authored with Jan Delhey, has just appeared in the Council of European Studies' journal Perspectives on Europe. The Article summarizes some of our findings from the first funding phase of the Horizontal Europeanization project (2012-15), as well as some insights from my PhD project Mapping the Transnational World. It is available online for free.
A draft version of my paper The Spatial Structure of Transnational Human Activity is now available online in the arXiv.
The map below shows exemplarily one type of communication that is analyzed in the paper: transnational Facebook friendships. The black lines denote the country pairs with the highest number of Facebook friendships. For the purposes of this study, they constitute the equivalent of the steps the random walker takes in the Lévy flight figure above. (NB: The Facebook data was obtained from an interactive graph, converted into a network matrix and graphically mapped using Manish Nag's fantastic free software SONOMA).
The third figure below shows the spatial structure of these Facebook friendships. The x-axis shows the distance (in km) and the y-axis states the probability of a transnational Facebook friendship to occur. The blue circles denote binned observations and the black line is a fitted power-law curve. The inset shows the same observations on logarithmic axes, on which the power-law curve forms a straight line.
A new article, "Between Collaboration and Disobedience: The Behavior of the Guantánamo Detainees and Its Consequences", is now available online ahead-of-print in the Journal of Conflict Resolution. Based on a novel dataset created from Joint Task Force Guantanamo–authored memoranda on 765 detainees which had been purloined by Bradley Manning and published by WikiLeaks in April 2011, this study examines the behavior of the Guantánamo detainees in terms of collaboration and disobedience and how it influences their chances of getting a release recommendation. The centerpiece of the analysis is a network of incriminations between detainees. The figure below, which is taken from the article, shows a graphical representation of these accusations for a sample of detainees from the four largest national groups at Guantánamo (Yemenis, Saudi Arabians, Afghans, and Pakistanis). It indicates that Yemenis and Saudi Arabians heavily overcontribute regarding incriminating statements, whereas Afghans and Pakistanis undercontribute.
In addition, the article reports that while a few detainees incriminate many others and many detainees incriminate only few others (the distribution of incriminating statements obeys a power law), the majority (62.6 percent) of all detainees do not incriminate anyone. Disobedient behavior does not affect the likelihood of getting a release recommendation, except for hunger striking, which has a negative effect. By releasing information, detainees don’t improve their own chances of getting release recommendations but impair those of the detainees they implicate. In the discussion at the end of the article, three different groups of detainees are identified (high-level-, low-level, and non-collaborators) whose behavioral patterns seem to follow distinct logics.
Key words: Guantánamo, terrorism, social network analysis, power law, mosaic theory, learned helplessness, power-dependence, WikiLeaks