Exit Viewer

Social Networks of Older Adults: A Comparative Study of Americans and Taiwanese By Ph ...

Chapter 1:  Introduction
image Next
Social Networks of Older Adults:

Chapter 1


Social networks are increasing in significance for the individualized social shaping of the individual. Visible and tangible social networks are coming to replace traditional collective structures, which are being eroded… . Small structures offer a subjective social structure of relevance, they are a space of choice and source of resources.

—Kirchhöfer (2000, p. 15, quoted in Field, 2003, p. 114)

A Comparative Study of Aging

This project is based on a comparative study of older adults from Taiwan and the United States. The Taiwan sample is drawn from a central city and from a village, and the U.S. sample is from northeastern Oregon. Beyond our interest in comparing the social relations of older adults from two quite different national cultures, we focus on the social networks of individuals and the nature of exchanges with network members. A procedure is developed to compare the structure of social networks and the exchanges among network members, and how these in turn relate to the well-being of the individual.