Skip to 0 minutes and 4 seconds Have you ever wondered why it is so difficult to control the outbreak of a virus? Are you sometimes surprised that conspiracies, such as the flat earth, persist? Networks are the key for understanding both these seemingly unrelated issues. Viruses, ideas, opinions– they all spread through the many connections that we share. To better understand the network dynamics underlying the spreading of new ideas, practices, viruses, and fashions, this module will introduce you to the core principles of network theory. You will discover that despite having the internet, often, network effects happen just like 10,000 years ago when we were tribal hunter-gatherers. Networks are difficult to study. They involve many people.
Skip to 1 minute and 3 seconds And their influences are often difficult to observe and stretch out over longer periods of time, sometimes years or even generations. Therefore, social scientists increasingly use computer simulations to study the dynamics of social networks. This module introduces you to network theory. And using easy-to-use computer simulations, no programming needed, you can explore, for yourself, how networks grow and how information spreads via these networks. After completing this module, you will have a basic understanding of how networks affect opinion dynamics and how viruses, rumours, and information on products and services spread, to name a view of the many applications. If you want to know more about how networks influence our lives, join us.