Much convergence exists between exchange theory and network approaches to social structure. Starting with the work of Emerson, exchange theory increasingly has considered social structure explicitly, as both product and constraint. Exchange theory and network analysis both conceptualize social structure as a configuration of social relations and positions, i. e. as a set of actors diversely linked into networks. Exchange theory and most work in network analysis are based on similar conceptions of the actor. Where exchange theory and network analysis differ is in their view of the links between positions. Exchange theory stresses the exchange aspects of all ties and contends that the appropriate network in any analysis is one that contains all relevant exchange relations. Network analysis tends to be more catholic about the nature of the links.
Annual Review of Sociology – Annual Reviews
Published: Aug 1, 1992
Keywords: social exchange; exchange networks; power; social networks
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