MoN16: Sixteenth Mathematics of Networks meeting

Ben Parker (University of Southampton) – Optimal design of experiments on connected units: How to use experiments to measure networks better, and how to use networks to make experiments better.

We review our recent method for designing experiments on social networks. In previous work, we introduced a linear network effects model, which provides a framework for finding the optimal design of experiments when experimental units were connected according to some relationship, which was specified by an adjacency matrix. We showed how these networks could be useful in a variety of experimental applications: for example, agricultural experiments where experimental units (plots) were connected by some spatial relationship, and also in crossover trials, where experimental units were connected by temporal networks. In this current work, we argue that there is a wide class of experiments that can be reformulated into a problem of design on a network, and that by presenting the problem in this networked form, we can develop faster new algorithms that allow optimal designs on the original problems to be found more quickly. In other words, by regarding experimental design models as problems in network science, we can improve experimental design algorithms even when there is no obvious network relationship.

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Contact: Keith Briggs (mailto:keith.briggs_at_bt_dot_com) or Richard G. Clegg (