Outline of a Multilevel Approach of the Network Society

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Dijk van, Jan (2005) Outline of a Multilevel Approach of the Network Society. In: Annual Meeting of the International Communication Association, May 26-30, 2005, New York City, NY.

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Abstract:Social and media networks, the Internet in particular, increasingly link interpersonal, organizational and mass communication. It is argued that this gives a cause for an interdisciplinary and multilevel approach of the network society. This will have to link traditional micro- and meso-level research of social and communication ties (Rogers, Granovetter a.o.) to the macro-level research of the network society at large (Castells a.o.).
Systems theory linked to a theory of communicative action establishes a potential basis for a multilevel theory. The systems theory described uses elements of a biologically inspired analysis of networks as complex adaptive systems and the mathematically inspired theory of random and scale-free networks recently elaborated by Barabási, Strogatz and Watts. The outline of the multilevel theory is summarized in ten statements about changing relationships in the network society: an information society with structures and modes of organization primarily shaped by social and media networks.
In the last section an inventory is made of the theoretical and methodological changes communication science will have to make to develop a general theory of the information and the network society in the perspective of communication.
Item Type:Conference or Workshop Item
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Behavioural Sciences (BS)
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Link to this item:http://purl.utwente.nl/publications/59818
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