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Semantic network edges: a human-machine approach to represent typed relations in social networks

M. Cristina Pattuelli (School of Information and Library Science, Pratt Institute, New York, New York, USA)
Matthew Miller (NYPL Labs, New York Public Library, New York, New York, USA)

Journal of Knowledge Management

ISSN: 1367-3270

Article publication date: 9 February 2015




The purpose of this paper is to describe a novel approach to the development and semantic enhancement of a social network to support the analysis and interpretation of digital oral history data from jazz archives and special collections.


A multi-method approach was applied including automated named entity recognition and extraction to create a social network, and crowdsourcing techniques to semantically enhance the data through the classification of relations and the integration of contextual information. Linked open data standards provided the knowledge representation technique for the data set underlying the network.


The study described here identifies the challenges and opportunities of a combination of a machine and a human-driven approach to the development of social networks from textual documents. The creation, visualization and enrichment of a social network are presented within a real-world scenario. The data set from which the network is based is accessible via an application programming interface and, thus, shareable with the knowledge management community for reuse and mash-ups.


This paper presents original methods to address the issue of detecting and representing semantic relationships from text. Another element of novelty is in that it applies semantic web technologies to the construction and enhancement of the network and underlying data set, making the data readable across platforms and linkable with external data sets. This approach has the potential to make social networks dynamic and open to integration with external data sources.



Pattuelli, M.C. and Miller, M. (2015), "Semantic network edges: a human-machine approach to represent typed relations in social networks", Journal of Knowledge Management, Vol. 19 No. 1, pp. 71-81.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2015, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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