An introduction to ERGM models with an application to the study of gender bias in high school

Lezione di Bianchi F. & De Gioannis E. (UniMi)

  • Date: 20 FEBRUARY 2023  from 14:00 to 15:00

  • Event location: UNIBO - Online event

  • Type: Cyber Mondays

Abstract: The seminar will be centred on Exponential Random Graph Models (ERGM), i.e. a class of statistical models of social network data which can be useful to test hypothetical social processes underlying the formation of social and cognitive relationships. First, the structure of the model will be presented, along with its underlying assumptions. Then, a brief description of estimation methods will be offered with a brief presentation of the available tools. In the second part of the seminar, the application of ERGMs will be showcased by presenting a study on the effect of gender stereotypes in the formation of perceptions regarding others' abilities among Italian secondary school students. We asked a sample of students to choose the four best candidates from their classmates for three hypothetical inter-class competitions in reading, mathematics and science. By modelling the network of nominations through ERGMs, we found that females were more likely to be nominated for the reading competition than males, while the opposite occurred for science, regardless of the students' actual school performance. The study can be found at:
Bio Bianchi F.: Assistant professor of sociology at the Department of Social and Political Sciences of the University of Milan, where he is a member of the Behave Lab and teaches social network analysis (SNA). He is mainly interested in the sociology of solidarity and agent-based modelling of social networks. His work has been published on international journals such as Social Networks and the Journal of Mathematical Sociology. He is associate managing editor of Sociologica - International Journal of Sociological Debate. 
Bio De Gioannis E.: Post-doctoral researcher in sociology at the Department of Social and Political Sciences of the University of Milan, where she is a member of the Behave Lab. She is mainly interested in experimental analysis of gender stereotypes in education. Her work has been published on international journals such as Quality & Quantity and Social Networks.