Close Communication and 2-Clubs in Corporate Networks: Europe 2010
Mokken, Robert J., Heemskerk, Eelke. M. and Laan, Steven. (2016). Close communication and 2-clubs in corporate networks: Europe 2010. Social Network Analysis and Mining, 6:40. doi 10.1007/s13278-016-0345-x
19 Pages Posted: 6 Nov 2015 Last revised: 2 Jul 2016
Date Written: June 22, 2015
Corporate networks, as induced by interlocking directorates between corporations, provide structures of personal communication between their boards. This paper studies such networks using the framework of a previous paper by Laan et al. (Soc Netw Anal Min, 2016. doi:10.1007/s13278-016-0326-0) where close communication is defined by sub-networks, so that each pair of nodes (boards of a corporation) are either neighbours or have at least one common neighbour. These correspond to sub-graphs of diameter at most 2, designated by us earlier as 2-clubs of three types (coteries, social circles and hamlets), and conform three levels of close communication in social networks. They are all contained within the disjoint boroughs of a network, supercommunities which envelope all close communication between nodes of a network. This framework is applied here to an analysis of corporate board interlocks between the top 300 European corporations 2010, using the data from an earlier study by one of us (Heemskerk in Econ Soc 42:74–101, 2013). While the results corroborate the main findings of the earlier studies, our approach also uncovers additional, thus far unrevealed patterns. A single dominant European borough with the Francophone network as its centre and that of Germany only regionally and internally connected. The UK business elite on the other hand is very present and prominent in this European structure of corporate close communication.
Keywords: corporate networks, interlocking directorates, close communication, types of 2-clubs, borough, pivot
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