Qual Quant (2014) 48:2657–2670
Homophily and heterophily in personal networks.
From mutual acquaintance to relationship intensity
Carlos Lozares · Joan Miquel Verd · Irene Cruz ·
Published online: 7 August 2013
© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2013
Abstract This article deals with the analysis of homophily and heterophily in ego-centred
networks (personal networks). The analysis takes a dual approach. First it uses the classical
deﬁnition of homophily (in this article called elementary homophily) to compare mutual ties
between groups deﬁned by employment status, age and city of residence. These analyses
are then enriched by incorporating the level of affective proximity, thus forming what we
have called speciﬁc homophily. The analysis of elementary homophily conﬁrms the expected
predominance of homophilous relationships over heterophilous ones. The analysis of speciﬁc
homophily shows that inter-group relationships between close and intimate contacts follow
similar patterns, whereas these differ substantially for relationships that are not at all close.
The comparison of the two types of homophily shows a correspondence between high values
in elementary homophily and high values in close and intimate relationships.
Keywords Homophily · Heterophily · Personal networks · Affective proximity ·
C. Lozares · J. M. Verd (
) · I. Cruz · O. Barranco
Department of Sociology, Centre d’Estudis Sociològics sobre la Vida
Quotidiana i el Treball (QUIT), Institut d’Estudis del Treball (IET),
Universitat Autònoma of Barcelona, Barcelona, Spain