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date: 27 January 2022

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter examines the role of social networks in social movement participation. It focusses primarily on the micro-level of analysis. It considers the scale of social networks in terms of units of focus, and geography. Literature on the social psychology of initial mobilization, and the importance of networks for targeting others for recruitment, and participation is reviewed. We discuss some of the theoretical processes that are thought to underlie the empirical association between an individual having network ties to other activists, and their participating in a social movement. We also consider research on network ties as an outcome, or dependent variable—namely, network social capital. We then provide a brief discussion of social network issues pertaining to social media and social movement participation. Finally, we examine some methodological considerations related to network dynamics and social movement participation.

Keywords: communication, critical mass, identity, micromobilization, network centrality, social influence, social network, ties

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