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date: 21 October 2019

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter considers the role of network theory in the study of political phenomena, the analytical theoretical basis of network analysis as applied in political science. Using the concepts of centrality, community, and connectivity, it discusses the relationship between the primitives of network theory and their relationship to empirical measurement of political networks. The chapter then discusses one of the most active areas of work on network theory in political science, models of network formation, and offers some concluding thoughts about future directions of network theory in political science. We argue that the deeper theorizing about political networks will complement and improve empirical scholarship on the role of networks in politics.

Keywords: centrality, community, connectivity, empirical measurement, network formation

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