Link Analysis

Creating a Link Analysis

Link analysis is a simple technique used in intelligence analysis to demonstrate the connections or relationships between people. It is commonly used in social science research, criminal investigations and national security.

The first step to link analysis is to collect the data, and decide on a coding scheme. An example coding scheme modified from one in Criminal Intelligence for Analysts is provided below:

Link Association Chart

Once you’ve collected the data, the next step is to build an association chart. This chart plots the interactions in a more preliminary format as a prerequisite to the link analysis chart. An example is below:


Drawing a preliminary chart yields the following:

Link Analysis Chart

Other techniques can be used to create more advanced link charts, as such:

Link Table

Additional Reading

For more additional reading, see the following resources:

Cite this article as: MacDonald, D.K., (2015), "Link Analysis," retrieved on December 9, 2022 from

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