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Marc Smith - Connected Action. Belmont, CA, US

Marc Smith Marc Smith

Chief Social Scientist | Connected Action


Internet sociologist, using social network analysis and visualization to map and understand social media



Marc Smith Publication Marc Smith Publication


20120622 web sci12-won-marc smith-semantic and social network analysis of social media with nodexl 20120301 strata-marc smith-mapping social media networks with no coding using node xl


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Marc Smith is a sociologist specializing in the social organization of online communities and computer mediated interaction. Smith leads the Connected Action consulting group and lives and works in Silicon Valley, California. Smith co-founded the Social Media Research Foundation (, a non-profit devoted to open tools, data, and scholarship related to social media research.

Smith is the co-editor with Peter Kollock of Communities in Cyberspace (Routledge), a collection of essays exploring the ways identity; interaction and social order develop in online groups. Along with Derek Hansen and Ben Shneiderman, he is the co-author and editor of Analyzing Social Media Networks with NodeXL: Insights from a connected world, from Morgan-Kaufmann which is a guide to mapping connections created through computer-mediated interactions.

Smith's research focuses on computer-mediated collective action: the ways group dynamics change when they take place in and through social cyberspaces. Many "groups" in cyberspace produce public goods and organize themselves in the form of a commons (for related papers see: Smith's goal is to visualize these social cyberspaces, mapping and measuring their structure, dynamics and life cycles. He contributes to the open and free NodeXL project ( that adds social network analysis features to the familiar Excel spreadsheet. NodeXL enables social network analysis of email, Twitter, Flickr, WWW, Facebook and other network data sets.

The Connected Action consulting group ( applies social science methods in general and social network analysis techniques in particular to enterprise and internet social media usage. SNA analysis of data from message boards, blogs, wikis, friend networks, and shared file systems can reveal insights into organizations and processes. Community managers can gain actionable insights into the volumes of community content created in their social media repositories.

Smith received a B.S. in International Area Studies from Drexel University in Philadelphia in 1988, an M.Phil. in social theory from Cambridge University in 1990, and a Ph.D. in Sociology from UCLA in 2001. He is an adjunct lecturer at the College of Information Studies at the University of Maryland. Smith is also a Distinguished Visiting Scholar at the Media-X Program at Stanford University.

Industry Expertise (10)

Internet Market Research Information Services Training and Development Direct Marketing Think Tanks Advertising/Marketing Research Social Media Media - Online

Areas of Expertise (10)

Social Media Social Networks Business Collaboration Information Visualization Social Science Social Marketing Networks Infoviz Collective Action

Accomplishments (4)

Author of Communities in Cyberspace (professional)

Communities in Cyberspace was among the earliest studies of the emerging world of social media, online and virtual community, social software, collaboration, and social networking.

Ph.D. in Sociology from UCLA (professional)

2001 Ph.D. in sociology - dissertation: Mapping social cyberspaces

Member of the NodeXL project team: Social Media Network Analysis with no Coding! (professional)

NodeXL makes social network analysis as easy as making a pie chart. Over four years the NodeXL project team has released over a hundred updates to enhance the tool so that it is the easiest path for non-programmers to access, analyze, and visualize networks, often from social media sources like Twitter, Facebook, email, flickr, YouTube, and more.

Author of Analyzing social media networks with NodeXL: Insights from a connected world (professional)

Analyzing social media networks with NodeXL: Insights from a connected world is a introduction and guide to the use of social network techniques to better understand social media.

Education (3)

UCLA: Ph.D., Sociology 2001

Dissertation: Mapping social cyberspaces

Cambridge University: M.Phil., Sociology 1989

Social Theory

Drexel University: B.S., International Area Studies 1988

Affiliations (6)

  • Social Media Research Foundation
  • International Network for Social Network Analysis
  • Association for Computing Machinery
  • Stanford University
  • University of Maryland
  • Connected Action Consulting, LLC

Event Appearances (16)


Global Spa Summit  Bali, Indonesia



Web Science Trust Graduate Summer School  Galway, Ireland


Convergence Technology 2011  Seoul, Korea



Personal Digital Archives 2011  San Francisco, CA, USA



Mobile Web Africa 2010  Johannesburg, South Africa



Predictive Analytics World  San Francisco, CA, USA



Local Social Summit 2011  London, UK



USC Marshall School of Business: Communication Technology Executive Roundtable   Los Angeles, CA, USA



Predictive Analytics World 2011  New York City, USA


3rd International Conference on Digital Culture  Seoul, Korea



Social Media Lecture Series  Purdue University



Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication  St. Louis, MO, USA



Nextwork  New York City, USA



Quantified Self 2011  Mountain View, CA, USA



Lipari School on Computational Social Science  Lipari, Italy



Oxford Internet Institute Summer Doctoral School  Oxford, England, UK


Sample Talks (1)

Mapping social media: finding key people and groups in the conversation crowd

People are talking about your product, group, business, event or service in social media - do you have a map to the the key people and groups in the crowd? Using tools from social network analysis and visualization it is now as easy as making a pie chart to map the connections among the people who are talking about the topics of interest to you. Using the free and open NodeXL application ( you can quickly collect and map conversation networks on a wide range of topics.



  • Keynote
  • Moderator
  • Panelist
  • Workshop Leader
  • Host/MC
  • Author Appearance


1500 to 15000 *Will consider certain engagements for no fee