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Collecting Social Network Data to Study Social Activity-Travel Behavior: An Egocentric Approach


  • Juan Antonio Carrasco

    (Department of Civil Engineering, University of Toronto, 35 St George St, Toronto, ON M5S 1A4, Canada)

  • Bernie Hogan

    (Department of Sociology, University of Toronto, 725 Spadina Avenue, Toronto, ON M5S 2J4, Canada)

  • Barry Wellman

    (Centre for Urban and Community Studies, University of Toronto, 455 Spadina Avenue, 4th Floor, Toronto, ON M5S 2G8, Canada)

  • Eric J Miller

    (Department of Civil Engineering, University of Toronto, 35 St George St, Toronto, ON M5S 1A4, Canada)


This paper presents a data collection effort designed to incorporate the social dimension in social activity-travel behavior by explicitly studying the link between individuals' social activities and their social networks. The main hypothesis of the data collection effort is that individuals' travel behavior is conditional upon their social networks; that is, a key cause of travel behavior is the social dimension represented by social networks. With this hypothesis in mind, and using survey and interview instruments, the respondents' social networks are collected using an egocentric approach that is constituted by the interplay between their individual social structures and their social activity behavior. More explicitly, individuals' networks are a context within which to elicit social activity-travel generation, spatial distribution, and information communication and technology use. The resultant dataset links aspects, in novel ways, that have been rarely studied together, and provides a sound base of theory and method to study and potentially give new insights about social activity-travel behavior.

Suggested Citation

  • Juan Antonio Carrasco & Bernie Hogan & Barry Wellman & Eric J Miller, 2008. "Collecting Social Network Data to Study Social Activity-Travel Behavior: An Egocentric Approach," Environment and Planning B, , vol. 35(6), pages 961-980, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:sae:envirb:v:35:y:2008:i:6:p:961-980

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