Egocentric contact networks in comparison: Taiwan and Hungary

Pethesné Dávid, Beáta and Huszti, Éva and Barna, Ildikó and Yang-chih, Fu (2016) Egocentric contact networks in comparison: Taiwan and Hungary. SOCIAL NETWORKS, 44. pp. 253-265. ISSN 0378-8733

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Abstract This study compares the size and structure of egocentric networks in Taiwan and Hungary using a diary approach. Both countries have transformed from authoritarian regimes to democratic states, yet they differ in social, economic, and cultural institutions that may be common to the respective larger region where each is located. To sample the structure of each egocentric network, we extracted information from largely identical contact diaries collected in both countries, 51 from Taiwan and 138 from Hungary. After comparing sample characteristics, network size, and composition, we construct a Strength of Ties (SoT) index based on two objective and two subjective measures of ego-alter ties. We then use this index to analyze tie strength by the types of relationships. On average, the number of alters contacted in one week is much larger in Taiwan than in Hungary, and the gap remains unchanged after controlling for key socio-demographic background factors. Even though the four indicators that we use to construct the SoT index are distributed similarly among the respondents in both Taiwan and Hungary, the composite index pinpoints how the types of relationships play somewhat different roles across the nations. The findings imply that the tendency to maintain only the closest ties with kin and other close friends is linked to distrust in others, a possible ill effect lingering from the authoritarian past. The implication is partially supported by further analyses using the ISSP 2006 survey data. We address how our findings may contribute to the existing literature on the linkage between societal characteristics and interpersonal ties.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Tie strength; Cross-cultural studies; Contact diary; Egocentric networks
Subjects: H Social Sciences / társadalomtudományok > H Social Sciences (General) / társadalomtudomány általában
H Social Sciences / társadalomtudományok > HM Sociology / társadalomkutatás > HM4 Social processes / társadalmi folyamatok
H Social Sciences / társadalomtudományok > HM Sociology / társadalomkutatás > HM5 Social psychology / szociálpszichológia
H Social Sciences / társadalomtudományok > HM Sociology / társadalomkutatás > HM6 Sociology of culture / kultúra szociológiája
Depositing User: MTMT SWORD
Date Deposited: 29 Jan 2016 11:45
Last Modified: 29 Jan 2016 11:45

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