Social capital, communication channels and opinion formation

Mavridis, Christos ORCID logoORCID: and Tsakas, Nikolas (2020) Social capital, communication channels and opinion formation. Social Choice and Welfare . ISSN 0176-1714 [Article] (Published online first) (doi:10.1007/s00355-020-01297-5)

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We study how different forms of social capital lead to different distributions of multidimensional opinions by affecting the channels through which individuals communicate. We develop a model to compare and contrast the evolution of opinions between societies whose members communicate through bonding associations (i.e., which bond similar people together) and societies where communication is through bridging associations (i.e., which bridge the gap among different people). Both processes converge towards opinion distributions where there are groups within which there is consensus in all issues. Bridging processes are more likely to lead to society-wide consensus and converge to distributions that have, on average, fewer opinion groups. The latter result holds even when the confidence bound that allows successful communication in the bridging process is much smaller than the respective bound in the bonding process.

Item Type: Article
Keywords (uncontrolled): Social capital, opinion formation, bounded confidence, bonding versus bridging associations
Research Areas: A. > Business School > Economics
Item ID: 31091
Notes on copyright: This is a post-peer-review, pre-copyedit version of an article published in Social Choice and Welfare. The final authenticated version is available online at:
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Depositing User: Christos Mavridis
Date Deposited: 29 Sep 2020 10:37
Last Modified: 29 Nov 2022 18:12

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