24 Pages Posted: 1 May 2012 Last revised: 16 Sep 2012
Date Written: May 1, 2012
This research aims to understand whether social resources (network size and network job prestige resources) determine the likelihood of civic engagement (Klofstad, 2011; Lin, 2001; Musick & Wilson, 2008) and whether the effects of social resources on civic engagement are moderated by media multiplexity (Wellman et al., 2003). Utilizing data from a nationally representative sample of 2,512 adults in the US (The Pew Internet & American Life Project, 2008), the findings indicate that network size has a positive effect on civic engagement, and the impact of network job prestige on civic engagement is moderated by media multiplexity. Namely, citizens using multiple types of online communications with valuable job prestige resources of network members will increase the likelihood of civic engagement. In comparison, citizens using multiple types of online communications with ineffective job prestige resources of network members will decrease the probability of civic engagement. The research contributes to our understanding of the roles of social resources theory and online communications in explaining civic engagement, as well as policy implications of digital divide.
Keywords: civic engagement, media multiplexity, social network and social resources
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