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date: 07 December 2019

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter provides a contemporary interdependence theory account of the causes and consequences of relationship interactions. The chapter (1) describes how interdependence theory provides a functional analysis of interaction, (2) reviews basic concepts of interdependence theory, (3) proposes a novel model integrating original interdependence concepts with more recent research, and (4) suggests how this model can be useful in future research. The proposed model indicates how situational characteristics and each partner's personal characteristics combine to influence perceptions of a situation (a person by situation interaction), which in turn affect each person's interaction behavior. The model also indicates how person characteristics filter perceptions of a partner's behavior and these perceptions of the partner's behavior predict whether the interaction continues, how the situation changes, and whether broader inferences are made on the basis of an interaction. Broader inferences about an interaction influence adaptive processes, such as recalibrating one's own characteristics that are relevant to the relationship, deciding whether to reevaluate the relationship, and managing future situations with a partner. The model is useful as a roadmap for future research because it integrates various research programs and indicates how distinct interaction processes and different levels of analysis fit together.

Keywords: interdependence, interaction, person-by-situation interactions, transformation of motivation, inferences about partner, functional analysis

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