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Un análisis empírico de redes sociales: Características y recursos asociados

Sonia Di Giannatale, Alexander Elbittar (), María Roa García (), Lucy N. Maya and Alfredo Ramírez

No DTE 515, Working papers from CIDE, División de Economía

Abstract: In this article we analyze how different characteristics of a social network are associated to different types of resources required by the individuals that constitute the network and their objectives. To attain this goal, we develop and conduct a survey, using random sampling, in a self-contained community, Centro de Investigación y Docencia Económicas (CIDE.) We measure different network elements using two criteria: expressive resources (social cohesion) and instrumental resources (acquisition of new resources); and we analyze the relationship among both types of resources and some specific financial and personal needs of the individuals. The survey’s results indicate that a very low (low) proportion of individuals turn to a small (large) network when in need of expressive (instrumental) resources. About network composition, we find that when in need of expressive resources individuals turn to the closest network level (family members), while when in need of instrumental resources the individuals turn to a more heterogeneous network with an important presence of institutions and people who provide professional services. We find evidence that suggests that when individuals turn to bigger networks, the closest network level (family and relatives) is the main resource provider. Our econometric results allow us to point out that gender, level of education and household size of individuals are significant to explain the relationship between the network size for every type of need and the probability of turning to every type of network. Finally, we observe a positive relationship between the size and diversity of the social network composition.

Keywords: social network; instrumental resources; expressive resources (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: D12 D85 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 30 pages
Date: 2011-07
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