Network-Driven Official Statistics (NDOS) is an exciting area of innovative research that uses techniques from network science or social network analysis to generate new types of official statistics. The research builds upon the premise that a society or economy cannot be understood by merely analyzing its individuals. Instead, the complex interactions between these individuals (people and organizations), are to be taken into account. As such, this initiative combines the fields of Official Statistics and Network Science:
- Official Statistics are statistics published by government agencies or other public bodies as a public good. The produced statistics typically relate to a country or region’s economy, society or demography, and are frequently used to steer policy and decision making. In the Netherlands, relevant official statistics are mostly produced by Statistics Netherlands (Centraal Bureau voor de Statistiek, CBS).
- Network Science, also referred to as social network analysis or complex networks, is a methodology aimed at extracting novel insights from network data. By applying data-driven algorithms and tailored network measures, the network structure can unveil new and previously unknown knowledge about the underlying data.
Currently, a number of parties are involved in this research initiative:
- Leiden University, Department of Computer Science (LIACS), Computational Network Science group.
- Statistics Netherlands / Centraal Bureau voor de Statistiek (CBS), Complexity platform (see position paper).
- University of Amsterdam, Amsterdam Institute for Social Science Research (AISSR) and Institute for Advanced Study (IAS).
These parties come together in the POPNET project.