Midterm Exam
MB 119 FALL 98

This is not a collaborative assignment. Each person in the class must write the questions independently. However, people are welcome to discuss the answers with each other prior to writing them. For example, two people can go over the answer to a given question together, then write up the answer separately in their own words. Answers are due in my mailbox (Fulton 430) by October 22nd, 4:30 pm, or, if sending by email, midnight of that same day.

Answer as fully as possible, in proportion to the number of points that each question is worth. Please type all answers, and observe the maximum page limits given for each question (which assume double-spaced, 12 point font, 1-inch margins). Given the maximum page limits, it is important to write in the most concise manner possible, so as to include everything that is important.

Section A. Answer the following question (15 points, 1 page maximum):

  1. Define the following terms in your own words. In other words, don't quote my handouts or the textbook.

    • social network
    • component
    • bridge
    • local bridge of degree k
    • path
    • walk
    • trail
    • geodesic distance (aka graph-theoretic distance)

Section B. Answer one of the following two questions (20 points, 3 page maximum):

  1. In what ways does a person's ego network shape their life? Be sure to touch on the composition of the ego network, the kinds of relationships that ego has, and the shape of the ego network.

  2. Compare and contrast the following four aspects of centrality: degree, closeness, betweenness, and eigenvector. Be sure to discuss the consequences for the individual of the different aspects.

Section C. Answer one of the following two questions (15 points, 2 page maximum):

  1. Discuss the relationship between how centralized a communication network is, and how successful the group is in solving problems.

  2. What structural features of a network determine how quickly information (or diseases) diffuse through that network?

Section D. Answer one of the following two (10 points, 1 page maximum):

  1. Summarize the principal explanations for why Moscow emerged as the pre-eminent Russian city.

  2. Summarize the method and main findings of the Travers and & Milgram experiment.

Section E. Answer two of the following four (40 points total, 6 pages total):

  1. Critically examine Brian Uzzi's theory of embeddedness in the garment industry. Explain what he says, why it is important, and give your evaluation of the theory.

  2. Explain the theory of network governance presented by Jones, Hesterly and Borgatti

  3. Discuss Granovetter's theory of the Strength of Weak Ties. Make sure to explain how the theory works, and what the implications might be for people in organizations.

  4. Discuss fully the theory of career competencies presented by Jones, Borgatti and Walsh, focusing on the social network aspects. Do not just summarize the article: discuss fully why these particular competencies are especially important today and in the 21st century, and how they relate to the concepts of embeddedness and network governance.