PhD Student from IFISC Wins Award at CompleNet 2024 for Best Student Contribution

May 2, 2024

Fernando Díaz-Díaz, PhD student at IFISC (UIB-CSIC), has been honored with the best student contribution award at the 15th Conference on Complex Networks, CompleNet 2024. The conference recognized Díaz-Díaz's innovative work on signed networks which can significantly influence our understanding of international relations.

His research, titled "Local balance reveals major historical events in signed networks of international relations" and done in collaboration with IFISC researcher Ernesto Estrada and Paolo Bartesaghi, introduces a local balance index that measures the level of balance at the node level in signed graphs. This index offers a fresh perspective by highlighting nodes that contribute to network imbalances, often correlating with pivotal geopolitical events.

Díaz-Díaz's study spans two centuries of international relations, utilizing a historic dataset of alliances and conflicts to construct yearly signed networks. By applying the local balance index, the research discerns clear correlations between significant drops in local balance and the onset of violent conflicts, while increases often align with peace treaties and alliance formations. The findings propose that the structured network of global interactions plays a crucial role in the emergence of conflicts and supports the notion that historical events are not merely random but can be analytically predicted through network behavior.

Fernando Díaz-Díaz received the award at CompleNet 2024, held this year in Exeter, UK and hosted by the University of Exeter.

Photo: Fernando Díaz-Díaz receives the award from researcher Mariana Macedo (Northeastern University London).


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