Noshir Contractor is the Director of the Science of Networks in Communities (SONIC) Research Group at Northwestern University. He is investigating factors that lead to the formation, maintenance, and dissolution of dynamically linked social and knowledge networks in a wide variety of contexts including communities of practice in business, translational science and engineering communities, public health networks and virtual worlds. His research program has been funded continuously for over a decade by major grants from the U.S. National Science Foundation with additional current funding from the U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH), Air Force Office of Research Support, Army Research Institute, Army Research Laboratory and the MacArthur Foundation.
Professor Contractor has published or presented over 250 research papers dealing with communicating and organizing. His book titled Theories of Communication Networks (co-authored with Professor Peter Monge and published by the Oxford University Press) received the 2003 Book of the Year award from the Organizational Communication Division of the National Communication Association. He is the lead developer of C-IKNOW (Cyberinfrastructure for Inquiring Knowledge Networks On the Web), a socio-technical environment to understand and enable networks among communities, as well as Blanche, a software environment to simulate the dynamics of social networks.