The Effect of Structural Holes on Social Capital and Individual Performance Within Social Media Networks

  • Yoanna LongEmail author
  • Roberto Mejias
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 9191)


The increasing use of social media has transformed the way that individuals interact with each other and has accelerated the exchange of information and knowledge. Social media has also created the phenomenon of social capital defined as the expected collective or economic benefit derived from the cooperative interaction between individuals and groups. Our research paper explores the effect on structural holes on social capital and participant performance. Structural holes have been defined as weak links to other social media groups outside the primary social network group. Research posits that weak links generate more alternate sources of new information and knowledge than strong links and thus, create more social capital and affect individual performance within a social network. Our results discuss the effect of frequency of user logins, posts counts and hierarchy (as a measure of structural hole) on experience and activeness as a measure of individual performance.


Social media networks Social capital Structural holes Hierarchy Virtual community 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Colorado State University-PuebloPuebloUSA

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