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2011-03-15

bonaich_1987_journal

CITATION: Bonaich, Phillip. 1987. "Power and Centrality: A Family of Measures." American Journal of Sociology 92(5): 1170-1182.

AUTHOR_1: Phillip Bonaich
YEAR: 1987
TITLE: Power and Centrality: A Family of Measures
SOURCE: Journal
SOURCE_TITLE: American Journal of Sociology

SUMMARYBonaich introduces a family of new measures for quantifying centrality and power, based upon his earlier measure, e. The new measures incorporate a parameter, β, that captures whether an actor’s status in an exchange network is a positive or negative function of the statuses of those to whom she or he is connected. The simpler measure, e, assumes that one’s own status is directly dependent upon the status of those to whom one is connected. The more complex measure ci(α,β) allows for the possibility that the influence of being directly connected to many others could increase one’s status if those others are not themselves well-connected (i.e. when β > 0), but could conversely decrease one’s status if the others are well- or better-connected than the actor (i.e. when β < 0). If β = 0, the measure simplifies to a traditional measure of degree centrality in which only one’s direct ties impact the status of the actor. The new measure is calculated over a range of possible βs for standard empirical datasets presented in Cook et. al 1983, and the results confirm our intuition about the contingency of status upon the precise content or nature of the exchange network relations.

REVIEWED BY: jrh

LABELS_FULL: 1987, jrh, reviewed, journal, centrality, power, status, exchange networks, measurement

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