Tracking local communities in streaming graphs with a dynamic algorithm

Anita Zakrzewska, David A. Bader

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


A variety of massive datasets, such as social networks and biological data, are represented as graphs that reveal underlying connections, trends, and anomalies. Community detection is the task of discovering dense groups of vertices in a graph. Its one specific form is seed set expansion, which finds the best local community for a given set of seed vertices. Greedy, agglomerative algorithms, which are commonly used in seed set expansion, have been previously designed only for a static, unchanging graph. However, in many applications, new data are constantly produced, and vertices and edges are inserted and removed from a graph. We present an algorithm for dynamic seed set expansion, which maintains a local community over time by incrementally updating as the underlying graph changes. We show that our dynamic algorithm outputs high-quality communities that are similar to those found when using a standard static algorithm. It works well both when beginning with an already existing graph and in the fully streaming case when starting with no data. The dynamic approach is also faster than re-computation when low latency updates are needed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number65
JournalSocial Network Analysis and Mining
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 1 2016
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Information Systems
  • Communication
  • Media Technology
  • Human-Computer Interaction
  • Computer Science Applications


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