Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Network of who marries whom, by profession


This blog is supposed to be about phylogenetic networks, not social networks. However, this post is a blatant exception.

Earlier this year, Adam Pearce and Dorothy Gambrell released this interesting web page:
This chart shows who marries CEOs, doctors, chefs and janitors
It is an interactive interface to a database of who marries whom. It is well known that people in certain professions tend to marry others with a given profession, and this database quantifies this pattern. The data are from the United States Census Bureau’s 2014 American Community Survey, which covers 3.5 million households. However, much of the dataset clearly also applies to many countries in the "western world".


The infographic is a matrix of professions organized left to right by more male-dominated to more female-dominated (as determined from the data in the database). If you move the mouse-pointer over any profession (or use the search box) then lines link the most common professions that the focus profession tends to marry, with line thickness indicating quantity. The pink and blue color gradients indicate the sexes of the two spouses.

You could try well-known marriage links like those for veterinarians (who tend to marry other veterinarians) and nurses (who tend to marry medical doctors), but more interesting ones for readers of this blog might be: biologists, mathematicians and statisticians (shown in the image above), computer programmers, or information professionals.

However, if you want to get really confused, try looking at "waitresses", "cooks" and "chefs", which seem to offer intransitive relationships.