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date: 20 February 2020

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter reflects on the growing relationship between Leader–Member Exchange (LMX) theory and research and social network analysis. We first discuss the themes of structure and tie strength in relation to several of the theoretical formulations of LMX theory that have served as the foundation for subsequent research. This section proceeds chronologically, beginning with the earliest work on the Vertical Dyad Linkage (as the LMX perspective was initially known) and concluding with recent empirical research integrating LMX and social networks. Our goal is to provide a narrative review of the development of the themes of structure and tie strength within the LMX literature. We then turn to recent developments in the field in which LMX differentiation figures prominently both theoretically and empirically, and engage in a close critical reading of this work from the perspective of cognitive social networks. We conclude by summarizing the opportunities for future research that emerge from our narrative and conceptual analysis.

Keywords: leader–member exchange, vertical dyad linkage, social networks, cognitive networks

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