706.616 Computational Social Systems 1

Graz University of Technology, Summer 2019
Classes: Thursdays 12:15 - 13:45, March 2020 - June 2020, Room HS i8 (Inffeldgasse 13)
TUGonline: https://online.tugraz.at/tug_online/pl/ui/$ctx/wbLv.wbShowLVDetail?pStpSpNr=228648 *

* 16.03.2020: register for the course!

* If you do not register you can not obtain the grade for this course!

Instructors (alph. ordered):

When sending e-mails, please remove spaces in e-mail addresses, replace <8 8 8> with @, and start your subject line with [css1]

Denis Helic

dhelic <8 8 8> tugraz.at

Elisabeth Lex

elisabeth.lex <8 8 8> tugraz.at

About the course

This course aims to provide students with a basic understanding and knowledge about the structure and analysis of social networks, selected web phenomena, including topics such as the small world problem, homophily, network dynamics, preferential attachment and others.


There will be 2 homework assignements in this lecture. Each assignment consists of 2 programming/applied mathematics problems.


Please note that these are only suggestions, the choice of the topic is up to you. We will discuss further suggestions during the lectures. For example, you can (i) model a process taking place on a network, e.g. information spreading over Twitter, the flow of passengers in a traffic system, etc; (ii) analyze empirical network(s); (iii) implement a random network generator, e.g. for small world networks. You should also try to come up with your own idea. You decide on the methodology, e.g. by simulation, optimization, statistical inference, analytical, or a combined appraoch. For a desired network you perform experiments, obtain results and finally discuss the results.

Then, prepare 5 slides for the discussion:

  • First slide: Introduction/Motivation
  • Second slide: Methodology
  • Third slide: Experimental setup
  • Fourth slide: Results
  • Fifth slide: Discussion

Upload the slides in TeachCenter as a PDF file until 23.06.2020 24:00. Here, you may find suggestions for software and datasets.


Projects and excercises will be discussed during lectures. We will try to find projects which are interesting and funny for both students and us ;-)

The total number of points that can be reached will be 80 (2x25 for homework + 30 for project).

The grading scheme is as follows:

  • 0-40 points: 5
  • 41-50 points: 4
  • 51-60 points: 3
  • 61-70 points: 2
  • 71-80 points: 1

Preliminary course schedule

Note to students: Changes to this schedule will likely be made.

Note to instructors: All teaching materials on this website are available for use under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 2.0 Austria License, except for referenced material.

Python Examples

NetLogo Examples

Jon Kleinberg's book:

There is no required text book for this course, however this book (also available online for free) is stronly recommended:

Networks, Crowds, and Markets: Reasoning About a Highly Connected World, by David Easley and Jon Kleinberg, 2010

Further selected course material available online:

Further material:

Free online books:
Tutorials and reviews: