Dissertation Abstracts

Online Social Networks: a new support for social capital

Author: Vázquez Chas, Loreto , loretto.vazquez1@gmail.com
Department: Sociology, Political Science and Public Administration
University: University of A Coruña, Spain
Supervisor: Muñoz Goy, Celia / Veira Veira, José Luis
Year of completion: 2014
Language of dissertation: Spanish

Keywords: Online Social Networks , Social Capital , Virtual communities
Areas of Research: Sociocybernetics , Comparative Sociology , Social Transformations and Sociology of Development

Abstract

The objective of this research is to demonstrate that online social networks constitute a new support for social capital. The spread of the Internet and, specifically, the online social networks as an important piece of both social and personal life, justifies the study of social capital, partially, in a different way from the traditional one, due to their characteristics and the consequences of their use.

To achieve this objective two databases were used in this research: OSIM. Encuesta sobre redes sociales en España.2012 (project CSO2009-08166) and European Social Survey (waves 1 to 5). To study the relationship between individual social capital and online social networks, descriptive analyses and bivariate analyses were performed, while multivariate analysis was used to explore the relationship between collective social capital and online social networks.

The most salient conclusions point that online social networks are useful to keep and to increase individual social capital, these networks favour social participation, they can behave, under concrete circumstances, as communities, and, at least in Europe, social capital is not declining, specially if the role played by online social networks is taken into account.

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