Workshop on Online Social Networks
    Participation by invitation only

 

Microsoft Research Cambridge, UK.

December 7, 2007.

 

 

Location matters: Using Social Network Analysis to Improve Network and Mechanism Design

 

 

 

 

Sonja Buchegger    (DT-labs, Berlin)

 

 

Abstract:

 

Network nodes may experience large disparities in utility according to their location in the network topology. These disparities become more problematic in resource-constrained self-organized networks, such as mobile ad-hoc, peer-to-peer, wireless mesh, or sensor networks, than they have been in traditional infrastructure-based networks. The impact of node location has so far received relatively little attention, e.g. it is common practice to assume the random-waypoint mobility model in mobile ad-hoc networks, implying that over time node location will be evenly distributed. We are interested in the effect of location on node utility when this assumption is removed.

 

Applying insights from social network analysis, we introduce centrality metrics and quantify the effect of location and several network topologies. As a concrete application of the general problem, we investigate how incentives for cooperation (such as payment or reputation systems for traffic relay in mobile ad-hoc networks) exacerbate or alleviate node utility disparities due to location.  We show that location matters and that without location awareness, such incentive schemes can be unfair.

 

We propose the use of centrality metrics, combine them with metrics from economics, and discuss their impact on the following networking research areas: mobility models, strategic node behavior (location changes), placement of access points in wireless mesh networks, topology control of overlay networks, location-aware incentives for cooperation, and evaluation of fairness of networking protocols.