A Language for Constructing Structural Models of Social Networks within and among Self-Referential Systems
Thinking of modern industrial societies as ecological networks comprised of separate systems, rather than as systems in and of themselves, demands clarification of what is meant by a social network. It also calls for a specification of the conceptual apparatus to be used in dealing with network structure, and this in turn requires specification of how the networks that are found within, as opposed to among self-referential systems are constructed. These latter tasks are particularly difficult, because there is little of value in the literature of sociology to guide us. In dealing with these issues, we must also face the question of how deeply we must probe beneath the surface characteristics of social networks to define the structure embedded in them.
KeywordsElemental Group Grocery Store Exchange Network Social Unit Legislative Body
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