Network measures that reflect the most salient properties of complex large-scale networks are in high demand in the network research community. In this talk we adapt a combinatorial measure of negative curvature (also called hyperbolicity) to parameterized finite networks, and show that a variety of biological and social networks are hyperbolic. This hyperbolicity property has strong implications on the higher-order connectivity and other topological properties of these networks. Specifically, we derive and prove bounds on the distance among shortest or approximately shortest paths in hyperbolic networks. We describe two implications of these bounds to cross-talk in biological networks, and to the existence of central, influential neighborhoods in both biological and social networks.
*Please note that there will be two AMCS/PICS Colloquia talks on October 17. Jennifer Chayes will be speaking at 1:30.