UTFacultiesEEMCSDisciplines & departmentsMORDMMPEventsDutch Network Science Society Winter Symposium

Dutch Network Science Society Winter Symposium


Friday 13 January 2023


10:30 - 17:00


University of Twente - Cubicus B209 (see this map)

The Dutch Network Science Society brings together researchers in network science in the Netherlands from various disciplines, including math, physics, computer science, social sciences, economics and health sciences. There will be a program of invited talks from across the spectrum of research in network science. In addition, there will be plenty of opportunity for the community to discuss, socialize and enjoy food and drinks together. So do not hesitate, and register for our Winter Symposium below!


10:30 - 11:00

Mehmet Baran Ulak

Understanding Urban Problems through Transport Networks

11:00 - 11:30

Elvin Isufi


11:30 - 12:00

Javier Garcia Bernardo

Detecting illicit financial flows

12:00 - 13:00



13:00 - 13:45

Leto Peel

Statistical inference links data and theory in network science

13:45 - 14:30

Francesca Giardini 


14:30 - 15:00



15:00 - 15:45

Vincent Traag

 Networks in research on research

15:45 - 16:30

Emilia Hannula

Soil biotic networks – from co-occurring species to food-webs




Register here

Mehmet Baran Ulak (University of Twente): Understanding Urban Problems through Transport Networks. Urban areas all over the world are facing major challenges and problems such as improving safety, sustainability, equity, and resilience against growing natural and human-made hazards fuelled by global climate change. Addressing these challenges and understanding urban problems compel utilization of physical as well as relationship networks in urban regions. Transport network and relationships between elements of transport system are major players in the way to evolve towards a safer, more sustainable, fair, and resilient urban areas. My research focuses on achieving these goals by understanding the urban problems through the transport networks; in which networks are not the focus, but the means to identify ways to address the challenges we are facing.

Javier Garcia Bernardo (Utrecht University) Detecting illicit financial flows: from micro data to macro behavior. Illicit financial flows are transfers of money from one country to another that are forbidden by law, rules or custom. These include tax avoidance, money laundering and the financing of corruption and terrorism. To efficiently transfer financial assets from the countries where they are generated to tax havens, individuals and corporations use complex corporate structures spanning multiple countries. These complex structures are set up and maintained by financial and tax advisors. The scale of these illicit activities is extremely large, with an estimated $2-5 trillion laundered each year and countries losing around $500 billion in tax revenue due to global tax abuse by multinational corporations and wealthy individuals.

In this talk I will introduce methods to identify the facilitators of illicit financial flows in economic networks. These methods allow us to estimate the scale of the illegal trust service industry in the Netherlands, and to detect higher-order dependencies in corporate structures used by multinational corporations and wealthy individuals. Understanding these patterns and interactions can help develop more effective strategies for detecting and preventing illicit financial flows.

Leto Peel (University of Maastricht): Statistical inference links data and theory in network science The number of network science applications across many different fields has been rapidly increasing. Surprisingly, the development of theory and domain-specific applications often occur in isolation, risking an effective disconnect between theoretical and methodological advances and the way network science is employed in practice. Here I will address this risk constructively, discussing good practices to guarantee more successful applications and reproducible results. I will motivate designing statistically grounded methodologies to address challenges in network science. This approach allows one to explain observational data in terms of generative models, naturally deal with intrinsic uncertainties, and strengthen the link between theory and applications.

Vincent Traag (CWTS) - Networks in research on research. When studying research itself networks naturally appear in a variety of contexts. Scientific knowledge diffuses over networks, and network effects are visible in citations, collaboration and peer review. Researchers cite each other's papers, collaborate with each other and move from one institute to another. In this talk I will review how networks feature in citations, collaboration and scientific mobility. Based on citation networks, scholars have constructed indicators of novelty and interdisciplinarity, and studied how the scientific literature builds on prior literature. Collaborations are affected by cultural and geographic distance. Academic prestige not only affects collaboration but also benefit collaborators. Finally, mobility and hiring networks reveal large inequalities, showing the role of institutional prestige.

Emilia Hannula (University of Leiden): Soil biotic networks – from co-occurring species to food-webs. The use of co-occurrence networks to describe species interactions in soil ecosystems has increased exponentially in past few years. However, the theory behind is not fully developed and interpretation of species co-occurrence is not well defined. On the other hand, soil ecology has strong foundation in  established food-web theories and in older studies interactions are usually quantified. Here, I will present the current status of the research field and discuss ways forward based on my own work using both food-web models and species co-occurrence networks.

This event is sponsored by the NWO grant CHIC (Capturing Higher-order Interactions in Chemical Reaction Networks)