Self-organized topology of recurrence-based complex networks

Hui Yang, Gang Liu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations


With the rapid technological advancement, network is almost everywhere in our daily life. Network theory leads to a new way to investigate the dynamics of complex systems. As a result, many methods are proposed to construct a network from nonlinear time series, including the partition of state space, visibility graph, nearest neighbors, and recurrence approaches. However, most previous works focus on deriving the adjacency matrix to represent the complex network and extract new network-theoretic measures. Although the adjacency matrix provides connectivity information of nodes and edges, the network geometry can take variable forms. The research objective of this article is to develop a self-organizing approach to derive the steady geometric structure of a network from the adjacency matrix. We simulate the recurrence network as a physical system by treating the edges as springs and the nodes as electrically charged particles. Then, force-directed algorithms are developed to automatically organize the network geometry by minimizing the system energy. Further, a set of experiments were designed to investigate important factors (i.e., dynamical systems, network construction methods, force-model parameter, nonhomogeneous distribution) affecting this self-organizing process. Interestingly, experimental results show that the self-organized geometry recovers the attractor of a dynamical system that produced the adjacency matrix. This research addresses a question, i.e., "what is the self-organizing geometry of a recurrence network?" and provides a new way to reproduce the attractor or time series from the recurrence plot. As a result, novel network-theoretic measures (e.g., average path length and proximity ratio) can be achieved based on actual node-to-node distances in the self-organized network topology. The paper brings the physical models into the recurrence analysis and discloses the spatial geometry of recurrence networks.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number043116
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 2 2013

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Statistical and Nonlinear Physics
  • Mathematical Physics
  • Physics and Astronomy(all)
  • Applied Mathematics


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