Strong Ties in a Small World
AbstractThis paper examines the celebrated strength of weak ties theory of Granovetter (1973). We examine two hypotheses implied by the theory: one, for any three players with two links present, the probability of a third link being present is increasing in the strength of the two ties, and two, the removal of a weak tie breaks more shortest paths than the removal of a strong tie. This paper tests these hypotheses using data on co-authorship among economists. Our data supports the hypothesis of transitivity of strong ties, but it rejects the hypothesis that weak ties are more crucial than strong ties. We then propose an explanation for the strength of strong ties which builds on two properties of the network: one, significant inequality in the distribution of connections across individuals, and two, stronger ties among highly connected individuals.
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Bibliographic InfoArticle provided by De Gruyter in its journal Review of Network Economics.
Volume (Year): 10 (2011)
Issue (Month): 2 (June)
Contact details of provider:
Web page: http://www.degruyter.com
Other versions of this item:
- Marco van der Leij & Sanjeev Goyal, 2010. "Strong ties in a small world," Working Papers. Serie AD 2010-02, Instituto Valenciano de Investigaciones Económicas, S.A. (Ivie).
- Marco van der Leij & Sanjeev Goyal, 2006. "Strong Ties in a Small World," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 06-008/1, Tinbergen Institute.
- A14 - General Economics and Teaching - - General Economics - - - Sociology of Economics
- Z13 - Other Special Topics - - Cultural Economics - - - Economic Sociology; Economic Anthropology; Social and Economic Stratification
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