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Integrating Prior Knowledge in Mixed Initiative Social Network Clustering

Abstract : We propose a new paradigm---called PK-clustering---to help social scientists create meaningful clusters in social networks. Many clustering algorithms exist but most social scientists find them difficult to understand, and tools do not provide any guidance to choose algorithms, or to evaluate results taking into account the prior knowledge of the scientists. Our work introduces a new clustering paradigm and a visual analytics user interface that address this issue. It is based on a process that 1) captures the prior knowledge of the scientists as a set of incomplete clusters, 2) runs multiple clustering algorithms (similarly to clustering ensemble methods), 3) visualizes the results of all the algorithms ranked and summarized by how well each algorithm matches the prior knowledge, 5) evaluates the consensus between user-selected algorithms and 6) allows users to review details and iteratively update the acquired knowledge. We describe our paradigm using an initial functional prototype, then provide two examples of use and early feedback from social scientists. We believe our clustering paradigm offers a novel constructive method to iteratively build knowledge while avoiding being overly influenced by the results of often-randomly selected black-box clustering algorithms.
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Preprints, Working Papers, ...
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Contributor : Jean-Daniel Fekete <>
Submitted on : Tuesday, June 9, 2020 - 4:04:14 PM
Last modification on : Monday, July 27, 2020 - 2:00:06 PM



  • HAL Id : hal-02566438, version 1
  • ARXIV : 2005.02972


Alexis Pister, Paolo Buono, Jean-Daniel Fekete, Catherine Plaisant, Paola Valdivia. Integrating Prior Knowledge in Mixed Initiative Social Network Clustering. 2020. ⟨hal-02566438⟩



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