Networks II

Information Science 4220/Computer Science 4852/Economics 3825
Cornell University, Spring 2015

Tues-Thu 11:40am-12:55pm

Olin Hall 255

Arpita Ghosh

Networks II builds on its prerequisite course, continuing to examine how the computing, economic and sociological worlds are connected and how the structure of these connections affects these worlds. In this course, we will construct mathematical models for and analyze networked settings, allowing us to both make predictions about behavior in such systems, as well as reason about how to design such systems to exhibit some desirable behavior. Throughout, we will draw on real-world applications such as kidney exchange, college admissions, online reputations systems and peer-to-peer filesharing that illustrate these phenomena.

Important Note: CMS

If you are not already on CMS, please email the course staff list with subject line "CMS add: NetID *" (replace * with your NetID) to be added to CMS.

All lecture notes, homework assignments and announcements will be posted only on CMS, so do make sure you are on CMS if you are taking the course!

Course Information

Instructor: Arpita Ghosh, 207 Gates Hall

Teaching assistants: Course staff email list:
Please make sure to use the course staff email list rather than individually emailing the instructor or individual teaching assistants---this list reaches all of us, making it more likely you will get an answer sooner.

Course Piazza page:
Please use the course Piazza forum, rather than email, for all questions and comments regarding course logistics, course material and content. Please also help answer other students' questions and participate in discussions, and contribute to an active forum! For any personal issues, not related to course logistics or content, you can send an email to the course staff list.

Office hours:


Outline of Topics

  • Matching markets
  • Information and networked behavior

  • Coursework


    There is no textbook for this class, as there is no single book containing all the topics we will cover in this class. However, readings for each topic will be posted on CMS as they become relevant through the semester.

    Note that these readings will not substitute for attending class, though, since the material in the lectures will typically at a different level of detail than the readings: the readings should be used as a supplement to, rather than a substitute for, the lectures.

    To supplement reading material, the lecture slides will also be made available on CMS from after each lecture. Note, however, that some examples will be worked on the whiteboard in class and these will not make their way into the lecture slides. This means that again, the posted lecture slides are not a substitute for attending class.

    Credit Components:

    Academic Integrity

    You are expected to maintain the utmost level of academic integrity in the course. Any violation of the code of academic integrity will be penalized severely.

    You are allowed to collaborate on the homework to the extent of formulating ideas as a group. However: Collaboration is not allowed on the other parts of the coursework.

    Finally, plagiarism deserves special mention here. Including text from other sources in written assignments without quoting it and providing a proper citation constitutes plagiarism, and it is a serious form of academic misconduct. This includes cases in which no full sentence has been copied from the original source, but large amounts of text have been closely paraphrased without proper attribution. To get a better sense for what is allowed, it is highly recommended that you consult the guidelines maintained by Cornell on this topic. It is also worth noting that search engines have made plagiarism much easier to detect. This is a very serious issue; instances of plagiarism will very likely result in failing the course.