Personal Networks: Frontiers of Ego-Network Analysis

Consumer finance and new technologies: research and practice

Recent years have seen a rapid expansion of research focused specifically on personal networks, as evidenced by new books such Egocentric Network Analysis (Cambridge, 2018) and Conducting Personal Networks Research (Gulford, 2019), and multiple sessions at the last several International Network of Social Network Analysis (Sunbelt) annual conferences devoted to the topic. A forthcoming special issue of Network Science is devoted entirely to the methodological and substantive papers on egocentric network analysis.

This work builds on an important tradition of research, many of the core ideas of which remain relevant. We believe there is a need for a serious volume that, through a combination of classic and new papers, examines where we have been and where we should head. The volume, Personal Networks: Classic Readings and New Directions, aims to become required reading on the topic.

This invitation-only conference will provide an opportunity for contributors to the volume to exchange ideas in a lively, constructive, and engaging environment.

The conference is co-hosted by Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University, Harvard University, and Indiana University.

Sept 26-27, 2019

Conference registration is by invitation-only.

Contact us with any questions you may have.

Kellogg School of Management
Conferences Team
Conference sponsors


mosaic bar


Thursday, September 26

Time Event
11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
Registration and Lunch
12:30 p.m. – 1:00 p.m.
Opening Remarks
1:00 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.
Session 1
From the Northern California Community Study 1977-78 to UCNets 2015-19* / Claude Fischer, Professor of the Graduate School, University of California Berkeley

Networked and Bounded Individuals Navigating a Networked Society On and Offline in East York
/ Barry Wellman, Co-Director, NetLab Network, University of Toronto

/ Bernice A. Pescosolido, Distinguished Professor of Sociology, Indiana University

Moderator: Mario Luis Small, Grafstein Family Professor of Sociology, Harvard University
2:30 p.m. – 3:00 p.m.
Break 1
3:00 p.m. – 4:30 p.m.
Session 2
Network Representation Capacity: How Social Connections are Represented in Human Mind? / Matthew Brashears, Associate Professor of Sociology, University of South Carolina

Self-Verification, Trust, and Social Capital Mobilization / Sandra Susan Smith, Professor of Sociology and Department Chair, University of California Berkeley

How Actors Mobilize Their Networks. A Theory of Decision-Making in Practice / Mario Luis Small, Grafstein Family Professor of Sociology, Harvard University

Moderator: Bernice A. Pescosolido, Distinguished Professor of Sociology, Indiana University 
4:30 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Unstructured time
6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
Cocktail Reception and Dinner

Friday, September 27

Time Event
8:30 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.
Session 3
Reflections On “The Focused Organization of Social Ties” And Its Implications For Bonding and Bridging / Scott Feld, Professor of Sociology, Purdue University

Structural Holes Capstone, Cautions, and Enthusiasms / Ronald S. Burt, Charles M. Harper Leadership Professor of Sociology and Strategy, University of Chicago Booth School of Business

Individuals, Groups, and Networks: Implications for the Study and Practice of Democratic Politics
/ Robert Huckfeldt, Distinguished Professor Emeritus, University of California Davis

Moderator: Bernice A. Pescosolido, Distinguished Professor of Sociology, Indiana University
10:00 a.m. – 10:30 a.m.
Morning Break
10:30 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
Session 4
TBD / David Krackhardt, Professor of Organizations, Carnegie Mellon University Tepper School of Business

Influencers, Personal Networks and the Power of the Periphery / Damon Centola, Associate Professor, University of Pennsylvania

An Illustrated Theory of Capital Conversion: When Do Social Capitals become Cultural Capitals? / Bonnie Erickson, Professor of Sociology, University of Toronto

Moderator: Brea Louise Perry, Professor of Sociology, Indiana University Bloomington
12:00 p.m. – 1:00 p.m.
1:00 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.
Session 5
TBD / Peter V. Marsden, Edith and Benjamin Geisinger Professor of Sociology, Harvard University

The Challenges and Opportunities of Ego-Network Analysis of Social Movements and Collective Action. / David Tindall, Professor of Sociology, The University of British Columbia

Personal Networks as Complex Adaptive Systems: Organizing Principles and Sources of Uncertainty in Network Dynamics / Brea Louise Perry, Associate Professor of Sociology, Indiana University Bloomington

Moderator: Mario Luis Small, Grafstein Family Professor of Sociology, Harvard University 
2:30 p.m. – 3:00 p.m.
Wrap up and next steps


Getting Here & Parking

Major airlines fly into both O’Hare International Airport and Midway International Airport. O’Hare Airport is approximately 45 minutes from Kellogg and Midway Airport is approximately 60 minutes from Kellogg, but you may want to allow more time for traffic.

Taxi service from both airports can be arranged in advance of your visit for a reduced fare. Pre-arranged rides start at approximately $35 from O’Hare and $50 from Midway. For up-to-date fare information, please contact a taxi service directly. 
We are happy to provide a parking permit for visitors that drive to campus. Upon arriving, park at either the South Campus Parking Garage (1847 Campus Drive) or the North Campus Parking Garage (2311 North Campus Drive.) The North Campus Parking Garage is closer to the Global Hub. Before leaving campus make sure to ask the staff for a validated parking ticket to exit the garage.

Where to Stay

Hotel information coming soon.

Conference Organizers

Brea Perry

Brea Louise Perry

Professor of Sociology / Indiana University Bloomington

Bernice A. Pescosolido

Distinguished Professor of Sociology / Indiana University
Mario Small

Mario Luis Small

Grafstein Family Professor of Sociology / Harvard University
Ned Smith

Edward (Ned) Smith

Associate Professor of Management & Organizations; Associate Professor of Sociology, Weinberg College of Arts & Sciences (Courtesy) / Kellogg School of Management