Last year America’s army, which jointly funds SOMA with the air force, began disbursing about $80m in five-year research grants for network analysis to promote democracy and national security. An authoritarian government, for instance, may have difficulties slowing the spread of a new idea in a certain medium—say, internet chatter about a book that explains how corruption undermines job creation...... An authoritarian government, for instance, may have difficulties slowing the spread of a new idea in a certain medium—say, internet chatter about a book that explains how corruption undermines job creation. Diplomatic services can use this information to help ideas spread.A key phrase in the UNESCO Constitution states:
SPADAC, a firm based in McLean, Virginia, performs such analyses on Egypt and other countries in Africa, the Middle East and South-East Asia. Clients include the United States, Mexico and various diplomatic services. Riots, bloody elections and crackdowns, among other things, can be forecast with improving accuracy by crunching data on food production, unemployment, drug busts, home evictions and slum growth detected in satellite images.
That since wars begin in the minds of men, it is in the minds of men that the defenses of peace must be constructed.This has been taken to define the core mission of UNESCO. The founders of created
the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization for the purpose of advancing, through the educational and scientific and cultural relations of the peoples of the world, the objectives of international peace and of the common welfare of mankind for which the United Nations Organization was established and which its Charter proclaims.UNESCO acts as an international intellectual leader, an honest broker, and a clearinghouse for ideas as well as by helping poor nations to build their capacity for social and economic progress.
I strongly suggest that UNESCO catalyze an investigation of the potential of social network analysis as a means to improve the planning, implementation and evaluation of social and economic development efforts. To do so would be very consistent with its mission in the promotion of social and human sciences, and specifically with its program on the Management of Social Transitions. The effort would also be consistent with the activities of UNESCO's Communication and Information Program, and specifically with its efforts to promote the dissemination of software and to promote the evolution toward Knowledge Societies.
The ideas in this posting are those of the author alone, and do not necessarily reflect those of Americans for UNESCO or any other organization.