Conceptual Foundations of Multilevel Social Networks
The Handbook of Multilevel Theory, Measurement, and Analysis, S. E. Humphrey and J. M. LeBreton, 2019
21 Pages Posted: 4 Feb 2019
Date Written: January 1, 2019
Recognizing the multilevel nature of social networks and incorporating this perspective into our theorizing and analytics can help us in specifying and testing more accurate models and generate a better understanding of the integrated influence of social networks at different levels. Because organizational networks are a multilevel phenomenon and ignoring their multilevel nature presents important limitations to understanding them, they require a multilevel theory. This chapter addresses these limitations by drawing on and extending the nascent research on multilevel networks. It briefly introduces foundational social network concepts and then defines multilevel social networks, clarifying what constitutes multilevel social networks. The chapter then presents multilevel network constructs, with special emphasis on understanding constructs at higher levels than the individual. Next, it presents a framework of multilevel network models and explains how social networks at different levels influence one another, and how networks at different levels jointly influence other phenomena.
Keywords: social networks, multilevel analysis
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