Burt's Constraint


Essentially a measure of the extent to which v is invested in people who are invested in other of v's alters (neighbors). The "constraint" is characterized by a lack of primary holes around each neighbor. Formally:
Burt's Constraint
where MP(v) is the subset of v's neighbors that are both predecessors and successors of v.

Burt's constraint is higher if ego has less, or mutually stronger related (i.e. more redundant) contacts. Burt's measure of constraint, Ci, of vertex i's ego network Vi, is defined for directed and valued graphs,
Burt's Constraint
for a graph of order (ie. number of vertices) N, where proportional tie strengths are defined as:
Burt's Constraint
ai,j are elements of A and the latter being the graph adjacency matrix. For isolated vertices, constraint is undefined.


Require directed and weigthed network.


  • BURT, R. S. 2004. Structural holes and good ideas. American journal of sociology, 110, 349-399.
  • BURT, R. S. 1995. STRUCTURAL HOLES, Harvard University Press. Page 55
  • CSARDI, G. & NEPUSZ, T. 2006. The igraph software package for complex network research. InterJournal, Complex Systems, 1695. [http://igraph.org]
  • JUNG, the Java Universal Network/Graph Framework [http://jung.sourceforge.net]


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