Master module "Social Network Analysis"


The course gives an introduction to the theory of social networks in business informatics. It does not only deal with the characteristics of individuals or organizations, but also with the relationships and structure of these relationships between individuals and organizations. The corresponding theories and concepts from economics, sociology, business informatics and organizational research will be introduced. In addition, methods from computer science and graph theory are taught that allow social networks to be evaluated quantitatively. Basic quantitative methods will be used to evaluate simple data sets with freeware/shareware programs, e.g. friendship networks like those found on Facebook.

Learning outcomes

After the course, the students will be able to...

  • to understand that economic action is not driven exclusively by the individual, but that economic decisions are integrated into a social environment (LGBWL-1),
  • better assess the value of information on social relations (LGBWL-2),
  • understand the mechanisms of social contagion and thus anticipate the decision-making process (LGBWL-3)
  • perform simple analyses yourself with the appropriate software tools (LGBWL-2)


  • Scott, J. (2000): Social Network Analysis: A Handbook, 2nd ed. London, U.K.: Sage.
  • Marsden, P. V. (1990): Network Data and Measurement. Annual Review of Sociology 16, 435-463.
  • Granovetter, M. S. (1985): Economic Action and Social Structure: The Problem of Embeddedness. American Journal of Sociology 91, 481-510.
  • Granovetter, M. S. (1973): The Strength of Weak Ties. American Journal of Sociology 78, 1360-1380.
  • Molitor, D.; Hinz, O.; Wegmann, S. (2011): The Interplay between Psychometric and Sociometric Data and the Willingness to Adopt New Products. Zeitschrift für Betriebswirtschaft (ZfB), forthcoming.
  • Hinz, O.;  Spann, M. (2008): The Impact of Information Diffusion on Bidding Behavior in Secret Reserve Price Auctions. Information Systems Research, 19 (3), 351-368.


Link to QIS

Link to OLAT