On the Robustness of Complex Systems with Multipartitivity Structures under Node Attacks

Qing Cai, Sameer Alam*, Jiming LIU

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)


Complex systems in the real world inevitably suffer from unpredictable perturbations, which can trigger system disasters, wreaking significant economical losses. To exploit the robustness of complex systems in the face of disturbances is of great significance. One of the most useful methods for system robustness analysis comes from the field of complex networks characterized by percolation theories. Many percolation theories, therefore, have been developed by researchers to investigate the robustness of diverse complex networks. Nevertheless, extant percolation theories are primarily devised for multilayer or interdependent networks. Little endeavor is dedicated to systems with multipartitivity structures, that is, multipartite networks, which are an indispensable part of complex networks. This paper fills this research gap by theoretically examining the robustness of multipartite networks under random or target node attacks. The generic percolation theory for robustness analysis of multipartite networks is accordingly put forward. To validate the correctness of the proposed percolation theory, we carry out simulations on computer-generated multipartite networks with Poisson degree distributions. The results yielded by the proposed theory coincide well with the simulations. Both theoretical and simulation results suggest that complex systems with multipartitivity structures could be more robust than those with multilayer structures.

Original languageEnglish
Article number8730471
Pages (from-to)106-117
Number of pages12
JournalIEEE Transactions on Control of Network Systems
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2020

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Signal Processing
  • Computer Networks and Communications
  • Control and Optimization

User-Defined Keywords

  • Complex systems
  • multipartite networks
  • network robustness
  • percolation theory
  • phase transition


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