ABSTRACTS

CONNECTIONS 20(1):54-55
1997 INSNA

 

Books

 

Cohill, A., and A. Kavanaugh. 1997. Community Networks: Lessons from Blacksburg, Virginia. Boston: Artech House.

The Blacksburg Electronic Village (BEV) is a true "online" community. With more than half of its population connected to the Internet, the citizens of Blacksburg can order their groceries... view art at a local gallery... or voice their opinions on a local bond issue... all with just a few clicks of a mouse! Authored by the people who made it happen, this new book takes a fascinating inside look at the five-year evolution of BEV, from its original concept in 1991 to how it's managed today. Community Networks: Lessons from Blacksburg, Virginia addresses the social, economic, technical, and educational impact of living in a "connected town," shows you how community members use their sophisticated network, and explores what has and hasn't worked along the way – and why.

Cotterell, John. 1996. Social Networks and Social Influences in Adolescence. Routledge.

Doreian, P., and F. Stokman. 1997. Evolution of Social Networks. The Netherlands: Gordon and Breach Science Publishers.

Taken from a special issue of the Journal of Mathematical Sociology, Evolution of Social Networks answers the question of whether we can apply evolutionary theories to our understanding of the development of social structures. Social Life emerges as soon as persons establish relations with each other. Regardless of the specific social processes, these relations evolve into networks with coherent structures – structures that provide some actors with opportunities for action while impeding on the progress of others.

Social networks have increasingly become the focus of many social scientists as a way of analyzing these social structures. While many powerful network analytic tools have been developed and applied to a wide range of empirical phenomena, understanding the evolution of social organization still requires theories and analyses of social network evolutionary processes. Researchers from a variety of disciplines have combined their efforts in what is an indication of some very promising future research and the work represented in this volume provides a basis for a sustained analysis of the evolution of social life.

Contents: The Weakness of Strong Ties: Collective Action Failure in a Highly Cohesive Group; The Emergence of Groups in the Evolution of Friendship Networks; Social Structure, Networks, and E-State Structuralism Models; Is Politics Power or Policy Oriented?; A Comparative Analysis of Dynamic Access Models in Policy Networks; Evolution of Friendship and Best Friendship Choices; Longitudinal Behavior of Network Structures and Actor Attributes: Modeling Interdependence of Contagion and Selection; Stochastic Actor-Oriented Models for Network Change; Models for Network Evolution.

Ess, Charles, editor. 1996. Philosophical Perspectives on Computer-Mediated Communication. State Unversity of New York Press.

Hage, Per and Frank Harary. 1997. Island Networks: Communication, Kinship, and Classification Structures in Oceania. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press

Contrary to common perception and belief, most island societies of the Pacific were not isolated, but were connected to other island societies by relations of kinship and marriage, trade and tribute, language and history. Using network models from graph theory the authors analyse the formation of island empires, the social basis of dialect groups, the emergence of economic and political centers, the evolution and devolution of social stratification and the evolution of kinship terminologies, marriage systems and descent groups from common historical prototypes. The book is at once a unique and important contribution to Oceania studies, anthropology and social network analysis.

Contents: Preface; Acknowledgements; 1. Island networks and graphs - Graph theoretical models - Geographical, linguistic and anthropological terms; 2. Trees: Basic definitions - A Micronesian prestige good system - 'Recursive dualism' in Austronesian classification systems - Cognatic kinship networks - Cycle rank and network connectedness; 3. The minimum spanning tree problem - Dialect groups and marriage isolates in the Tuamotus - The evolution of the Lakemban Matanitu - The Renfrew-Sterud method of close proximity analysis - On deconstructing a network; 4. Search trees I: Independent discoveries

Hudson, H. E.. 1997. Global Connections: International Telecommunications Infrastructure and Policy. New York: Van Nostrand Reinhold.

This book is a comprehensive guide to the changing world of international communications, including major trends in technology, industry, and policy. The book will be valuable to telecommunications professionals, market analysts, investors and corporate strategists concerned with using global networks for strategic advantage. It provides an overview of the telecommunications industry in major industrialized countries, prospects for emerging economies, and analyses of issues and strategies required for achieving "global information infrastructure." Author Heather E. Hudson has consulted widely for the telecommunications vendors and users and for international organizations, notably the World Bank and the international Telecommunication Union (ITU).

Contents: New Technologies and Applications; Major Players: The Telecommunications Industry and Users; Structural Models of the Telecommunications Industry; Structure of Telecommunications in Major Industrialized Countries; The European Community; Telecommunications Sector in Japan and Other Industrialized Countries; The Role of Telecommunications in Socioeconomic Development; Overcoming the Barriers of Distance; Telecommunications in Eastern Europe and Russia; Asia: Demand and Diversity; Telecommunications in Latin America; International Satellite Communications; Bibliography.

Knipscheer, C. P. M. 1996. Living Arrangements and Social Networks of Older Adults. V. U. University Press, Netherlands.

Kowaleski, David. 1996. Global Establishment: The Political Economy of North Asian Networks. Saint Martin's Press.

Litwin, Howard. 1996. The Social Networks of Older People: A Cross-National Analysis. Praeger Publishers, Inc.

Sato, Tsugitaka, editor. 1996. Islamic Urbanism in Human History: Political Power and Social Networks. Columbia Unviersity Press.

Singerman, Diane. 1995. Avenues of Participation Family, Politics, and Networks in Urban Quarters of Cairo. Princeton: Princeton University Press

Intentionally excluded from formal politics in authoritarian states by reigning elites, do the common people have concrete ways of achieving community objectives? Contrary to conventional wisdom, this book demonstrates that they do. Focusing on the political life of the sha'b (or popular classes) in Cairo, Diane Singerman shows how men and women develop creative and effective strategies to accomplish shared goals, despite the dominant forces ranged against them.

Wiles, David K. 1996. Networking High Performance in New York's Secondary Education: The Regents Curriculum Story. University Press of America..