Visualizing Your Co-Author Network

I recently decided to create a visualization of my co-author network. I believed that this was a fairly easy task and expected to find a single, very simple tool and instructions for it online. However, much to my chagrin, this process took much longer than I expected. Below are the steps I figured out after some trial and error:

Co-authorship network map of physicians publis...

Co-authorship network map of physicians publishing on hepatitis C (Photo credit: speedoflife)

1.   Create a file of your scholarly work using any reference manager. I used EndNote for this task. Then select and export the relevant references into a text file in BibTex format. To accomplish this in EndNote, you must ‘Select Another Style …’ in the citation style drop down, and then select ‘Bib Text Export’. Then click on File->Export and save as a text file with ‘Bib Text Export’ selected as the ‘Output Style’.


2. Download, install and run Sci2 from the Indiana University website here. Do the same for Gephi from here.


3.  Load the references into Sci2 using the File->Load option. Select the correct format.


4. Select the file, click on Data Preparation-> Extract Co-author Network.


5. Select the Author Information file and  select Visualization->Networks->Gephi


6. Gephi should open up. Create a new undirected graph. You can use the Gephi WYSIWYG editor to edit the graph, add labels, change colors, increase the size of the nodes and edges based on number of authored and co-authored papers respectively.




My output can be seen here. (Note that I used a Yifan Hu layout and only retained first-order connections). This process can be followed to create visualizations for a variety of networks, including a complete co-authorship network, citation networks, networks of Twitter followers, etc.






One thought on “Visualizing Your Co-Author Network

  1. I see that this could have interesting interpretations (it can be used to find like minded bloggers, partners and affiliations as well, not to mention places where you are being mentioned). However a lot of the terms you are mentioning sound greek and latin to me 🙂

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s