Paolo makes an interesting point below about the research philosophical issues you would run into by developing what he calls Net-Map 0.2. The fact that by rating links following a mechanical rule (depending on their distance to the interview partner) one does not necessarily get closer to meaning and that it might lead us into a well known dead end to try to look for “the” reality by adding everyone’s story up quantitatively.
Also, when I thought about it more, I realized that we might run into a number of “internal” methodological problems.
1. I don’t know of any SNA program or algorithm that deals with weighted links. So finally, if we wanted to analyze anything quantitatively, we’d have to decide on a cut-off point (define that only links of a certain weight and above will be included) – how would we decide on that and would it make sense?
2. And more importantly, the logic of a network flow can be completely turned around by leaving out one link. If you take a circular flow involving 6 actors. One of these flows is three steps removed from our interview partner so we decide that’s the cut-off point and remove that link. All of a sudden we don’t have a circle but a line with a beginning and end point. And Paul, who used to be an equal partner in the circle is an isolate all of a sudden… This is a simple example and easy to spot, but in complex networks there will be a lot of flows that don’t make sense any more if we remove one or two links just because they are too far away from the interview partner…
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