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Keywords:

  • Cox proportional hazards model;
  • Network data analysis;
  • Partial likelihood inference;
  • Point processes

Summary

Network data often take the form of repeated interactions between senders and receivers tabulated over time. A primary question to ask of such data is which traits and behaviours are predictive of interaction. To answer this question, a model is introduced for treating directed interactions as a multivariate point process: a Cox multiplicative intensity model using covariates that depend on the history of the process. Consistency and asymptotic normality are proved for the resulting partial-likelihood-based estimators under suitable regularity conditions, and an efficient fitting procedure is described. Multicast interactions—those involving a single sender but multiple receivers—are treated explicitly. The resulting inferential framework is then employed to model message sending behaviour in a corporate e-mail network. The analysis gives a precise quantification of which static shared traits and dynamic network effects are predictive of message recipient selection.