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Neighbourhood social ties: how much do residential, physical and virtual mobility matter?

Authors
Publisher
Wiley Blackwell
Publication Date
Keywords
  • H Social Sciences (General)

Abstract

Following up on the prediction by classical sociological theorists that neighbours will become irrelevant as societies become more mobile, this research examines the strength of people's social ties with neighbours and the associations thereof with residential, physical and virtual mobility using longitudinal data for Germany. Unlike previous studies, the research considers the three forms of mobility simultaneously and contrasts its effects on social ties with neighbours to those with family. The results show that residential and physical mobility are negatively associated with social ties to neighbours and positively with ties to family. Virtual mobility does not weaken social ties with neighbours but ties with family. The positive association between mobility and social ties with family may not be strong enough to ascertain that people maintain as close social ties to others in the future as it does not outweigh the negative association with visiting neighbours.

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