Social Influence Network Theory: A Sociological Examination of Small Group Dynamics

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Cambridge University Press, Apr 18, 2011 - Social Science
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Social influence network theory presents a mathematical formalization of the social process of attitude changes that unfolds in a social network of interpersonal influences. This book brings the theory to bear on lines of research in the domain of small group dynamics concerned with changes of group members' positions on an issue, including the formation of consensus and of settled disagreement, via endogenous interpersonal influences, in which group members are responding to the displayed positions of the members of the group. Social influence network theory advances a dynamic social cognition mechanism, in which individuals are weighing and combining their own and others' positions on an issue in the revision of their own positions. The influence network construct of the theory is the social structure of the endogenous interpersonal influences that are involved in this mechanism. With this theory, the authors seek to lay the foundation for a better formal integration of classical and current lines of work on small groups in psychological and sociological social psychology.

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influence network perspective on small groups
linkages with other formal models
Expectation States and Affect Control Theory
Individuals in Groups
Appendix A Fundamental Constructs and Equations
Formal Analysis of Dyadic Influence Systems
Social Positions in Influence Networks
Appendix E Goldbergs Index of Proportional Conformity

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About the author (2011)

Noah E. Friedkin is Professor and former Chair of Sociology at the University of California, Santa Barbara. He is the author of A Structural Theory of Social Influence (Cambridge University Press, 1998), which received the award for Best Book in Mathematical Sociology from the Mathematical Sociology Section of the American Sociological Association, as well as articles in various scholarly journals, including The American Sociological Review, The American Journal of Sociology, Social Forces and The Administrative Science Quarterly. He is an elected member of the Sociological Research Association. Professor Friedkin's areas of research specialization are social psychology, mathematical sociology, and formal organizations.

Eugene C. Johnsen is Professor Emeritus of Mathematics, former Vice Chair of Mathematics, and former Director of Summer Sessions at the University of California, Santa Barbara. His mathematical publications have appeared in such journals as the Canadian Journal of Mathematics, Linear Algebra and its Applications, Linear and Multilinear Algebra, the Journal of Algebra, Mathematische Zeitschrift, and the Journal of Combinatorial Theory, and his social science publications have appeared in such journals as Social Networks, the Journal of Mathematical Sociology, Social Science Research, Sociological Methods and Research, and Advances in Group Processes. He held a National Academy of Sciences-National Research Council Postdoctoral Research Associateship at the National Bureau of Standards and has been a principal investigator or co-investigator on grants from the National Science Foundation and the Air Force Office of Scientific Research. Professor Johnsen's research has been in the areas of linear algebra, combinatorics, social networks, and mathematical sociology.

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