Exeter Centre for Social Networks seminar 'The Agency of Others: How Self-Monitoring Similarity Affects Brokerage Opportunities.
Abstract: We investigate whether the personalities of the coworkers with whom individuals interact help explain the extent to which individuals occupy brokerage positions in social networks. We draw on self-monitoring theory and research concerning the extent to which people flexibly adapt attitudes and behaviors to the demands of different situations. We suggest that differences in self-monitoring personality affect social structure beyond the reach of the individual. In Study 1, we use cross-sectional data on advice relations in a hospital to investigate patterns of similarity matching. We find that high self-monitors attract advice requests mainly from high self-monitors, and low self-monitors from low self-monitors, although high self-monitors receive more advice requests overall. In Study 2, we use longitudinal data on advice relations within a post-graduate cohort, to show that high self-monitors come to occupy network brokerage roles to the extent that they are sought for advice by other high self-monitors. High self-monitoring contacts tend to remain unconnected from each other whereas low self-monitoring contacts tend to interact with each other. In contrast to existing research that emphasizes the agency of focal individuals, our research reveals the extent to which brokerage opportunities depend on the personalities of those with whom individuals interact.
One-to-One Meetings: Stefano will be available to meet with faculty members and PhD students during the morning of January 22nd and 23rd Please contact Cecile Emery (email@example.com) if you would like to schedule an appointment with Stefano.