From the online Journal of Social Structure
ABSTRACT: Advances in text analysis, particularly the ability to extract network based information from texts, is enabling researches to conduct detailed socio-cultural ethnographies rapidly by retrieving characteristic descriptions from texts and fusing the results from varied sources. We describe this process and illustrate it in the context of conflict in the Sudan. We show how network information can be extracted from vast quantities of unstructured texts-based information using computer assisted processes. This is illustrated by an examination of changes in the political networks in Sudan as extracted from the Sudan Tribune. We find that this approach enables rapid high level assessment of a socio-cultural environment, generates results that are viewed as accurate by subject matter experts, and match actual historical events. The relative value of this socio-cultural analysis approach is discussed.