Investigators on Indian Side: Niloy Ganguly, Aaditeshwar Seth, Arobinda Gupta,  Sanasam Ranbir Singh, Saptarshi Ghosh

Investigators on German Side: Krishna Gummadi, Bimal Viswanath

Broad areas of research collaboration: Online Social Networks

The focus of the IMPECS research group at IIT Kharagpur is to understand the network structure and user interactions in Online Social Networks (OSNs) and to leverage this understanding for building better information sharing systems. We are particularly working on the Twitter OSN which is one of the most popular OSNs today. We are presently focusing on the problem of identifying trustworthy topic experts, i.e., users who can be sources of authentic information on
particular topics of interest. Our prior work has shown that conventionally used metrics such as in-degree (number of followers) or Pagerank in the follow network can be easily manipulated by malicious users to acquire false influence in Twitter. We are investigating alternative metrics of influence, which will be more difficult to manipulate. We also plan to extend this work to finding trustworthy content on specific topics. This can be useful in scenarios such as dissemination of real-time news immediately after a natural calamity, and can prevent the spread of rumors in such scenarios.

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