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Extending network analysis with social inclusions: A Chinese entrepreneur building social capital

Abstract

Social network analysis is a highly useful tool to study the way individuals form alliances to cope with their daily tasks on the micro-level. We can map the interaction between the key persons involved into a graph, representing the social network. The result is then a snapshot of who interacts with whom and why/how at the time the data were collected. However, when trying to apply it to a higher level, real life problems, this method of analysis seems to deviate from the way people form networks of relationships in social practice. In social practice, human actors tend to form relationships on the basis of institutional affiliation and inclusion in social groups. This paper intends to use Social Integration (SI) developed at Erasmus University Rotterdam on the basis of Karl Weick’s organization theory to enrich current social network theory with a module that links networks on the basis of multiple inclusions of actors in several social-cognitive groups (networks). The expanded model is tested on a Chinese business case.

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Correspondence to Lynda Jiwen Song.

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Keywords

  • social network analysis
  • social integration theory
  • social capital
  • Chinese entrepreneurs