Active Surveying: A Probabilistic Approach for Identifying Key Opinion Leaders
Hossam Sharara, Lise Getoor, Myra Norton
Opinion leaders play an important role in influencing people’s beliefs, actions and behaviors. Although a number of methods have been proposed for identifying influentials using secondary sources of information, the use of primary sources, such as surveys, is still favored in many domains. In this work we present a new surveying method which combines secondary data with partial knowledge from primary sources to guide the information gathering process. We apply our proposed active surveying method to the problem of identifying key opinion leaders in the medical field, and show how we are able to accurately identify the opinion leaders while minimizing the amount of primary data required, which results in significant cost reduction in data acquisition without sacrificing its integrity.