Using SOMbrero for clustering and visualizing graphs

  • Madalina Olteanu
  • Nathalie Villa-Villaneix


Graphs have attracted a burst of attention in the last years, with applications to social science, biology, computer science... In the present paper, we illustrate how self-organizing maps (SOM) can be used to enlighten the structure of the graph, performing clustering of the graph together with visualization of a simplified graph. In particular, we present the R package SOMbrero which implements a stochastic version of the so-called relational algorithm: the method is able to process any dissimilarity data and several dissimilarities adapted to graphs are described and compared. The use of the package is illustrated on two real-world datasets: one, included in the package itself, is small enough to allow for a full investigation of the influence of the choice of a dissimilarity to measure the proximity between the vertices on the results. The other example comes from an application in biology and is based on a large bipartite graph of chemical reactions with several thousands vertices.
Numéro spécial : Special Issue on Networks and Statistics