[Sigmetrics] Co-word Maps and Topic Modeling: A Comparison from a User's Perspective

David Wojick dwojick at craigellachie.us
Fri Nov 13 10:22:25 EST 2015

Very interesting, Loet. Two thoughts:

If you want to visualize the argument in a document, that is what my issue 
tree method does. See for example http://www.stemed.info/Repo_Tree.pdf. 
However, this visualization is based on the logical relations between the 
asserted propositions, which no algorithm that I know of can find. It would 
be fun to try to develop one.

Second, the visualizations in your paper are two dimensional projections of 
a complex three dimensional structure. Other projections (and other 
structurings) might show other clustering, including possibly making the 
topical modeling more meaningful.

Wonderful work,


At 01:14 AM 11/11/2015, Loet Leydesdorff wrote:

>PS. I forgot to provide the link at 
><http://arxiv.org/abs/1511.03020>http://arxiv.org/abs/1511.03020; apologies. L.
><http://arxiv.org/abs/1511.03020>Co-word Maps and Topic Modeling: A 
>Comparison from a User's Perspective
>Induced by "big data," "topic modeling" has become an attractive 
>alternative to mapping co-words in terms of co-occurrences and co-absences 
>using network techniques. We return to the word/document matrix using 
>first a single text with a strong argument ("The Leiden Manifesto") and 
>then upscale to a sample of moderate size (n = 687) to study the pros and 
>cons of the two approaches in terms of the resulting possibilities for 
>making semantic maps that can serve an argument. The results from co-word 
>mapping (using two different routines) versus topic modeling are 
>significantly uncorrelated. Whereas components in the co-word maps can 
>easily be designated, the coloring of the nodes according to the results 
>of the topic model provides maps that are difficult to interpret. In these 
>samples, the topic models seem to reveal similarities other than semantic 
>ones (e.g., linguistic ones). In other words, topic modeling does not 
>replace co-word mapping.
>Loet Leydesdorff and Adina Nerghes
>** apologies for cross-postings
>Loet Leydesdorff
>Professor, University of Amsterdam
>Amsterdam School of Communication Research (ASCoR)
><mailto:loet at leydesdorff.net>loet at leydesdorff.net ; 
>Honorary Professor, <http://www.sussex.ac.uk/spru/>SPRU, University of 
>Guest Professor <http://www.zju.edu.cn/english/>Zhejiang Univ., Hangzhou; 
>Visiting Professor, <http://www.istic.ac.cn/Eng/brief_en.html>ISTIC, Beijing;
>Visiting Professor, <http://www.bbk.ac.uk/>Birkbeck, University of London;
>SIGMETRICS mailing list
>SIGMETRICS at mail.asis.org
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