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Michel Grossetti Quest-ce quune relation sociale ? ReSTo4 – 8 Juillet 2010.

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Presentation on theme: "Michel Grossetti Quest-ce quune relation sociale ? ReSTo4 – 8 Juillet 2010."— Presentation transcript:

1 Michel Grossetti Quest-ce quune relation sociale ? ReSTo4 – 8 Juillet 2010

2 Social Network Analysis (SNA) : strength Focusing on social relations and networks, avoids : 1.the weakness of theories directly linking « individual » and « society ». 2.the weakness of theories only explaining behaviour by categories belongings (age, gender, occupation, etc.) 3.the weakness of « pure » interactionnist theories (Goffman, Garfinkel, etc.) which dont describe durable social contexts and focus too much on ephemeral interactions. and allows : 1.an empirical and precise description of social structure 2.obtaining cumulative results on social structure

3 Social Network Analysis (SNA) : weakness 1.Relational reductionnism : all social forms (groups, markets, etc.) are supposed to be the result of social networks. 2.No clear definition of social relations and not much studies on it 3.Not much studies on dynamics linking social networks and other social entities

4 An analytic tool which might help getting over this weakness : mediation resources This notion is based on the work of the sociologist of art, Antoine Hennion, close to the « actor-network theory ». Hennion uses « mediation » for naming all the tools and professionals allowing the « revival » of baroque music : musical instruments, scores, musicologists, plans of old instruments, etc. Hennions idea is that all these mediations are not neutral pipes transmitting information, they have an impact on what happens and on the meaning that people give to what happens. (Hennion Antoine (1993). La passion musicale. Une sociologie de la mediation. Paris: Metailié. Hennion A., 2005, «Pragmatics of Taste», in Jacobs MD., Weiss Hanrahan N. (ed.), The Blackwell Companion to the Sociology of Culture, Oxford, Blackwell, p «Pragmatics of Taste» The Blackwell Companion to the Sociology of Culture

5 Mediations resources (theoretical point) Social resources are all that actors can use, are subjected to, are interested in, that make their interactions possible. Depending on the situation, the same entity can be a resource, a constraint, what is at stake, what makes a mediation. A resource can be material, discursive, cognitive. Most of the times its all the three. Some kinds of cognitive resources : theories, stories, values, routines, affects. The idea of mediation can encompass everything that allows actors being together (including war, competition and other non cooperative situations). Its more general than coordination, interaction (in its classical definition), communication. Any kind of resource can be a mediation resource in some situations. A mediation resource is a social resource used in a process of mediation. A mediation device is a resource designed to operate a mediation (ex : phone book) A mediation resource has a social area of efficiency (mass, time, generality)

6 Social networks OR mediation resources Already existing personal relation Chain of social ties Mediation resource

7 Example : Social networks and Mediation resources in the labor market Re-interpretation of some results of Mark Ganovetters book Getting a Job (1974) The way people find jobs : 1.Personal contact : 56% ; 2.Formal means : 19% ; 3.Direct step : 19% ; 4.Other : 6% « Personal contacts » is approximately equivalent to social networks. What do people use when they dont use personal contacts ? advertisement ; CV ; directories ; employment agency ; etc. Mediation resources

8 Encastrements et découplages Dissolution dun niveau daction : encastrement Emergence dun niveau daction : découplage

9 Dynamique des réseaux et des collectifs (plus généralement des formes sociales) : - Les relations se créent souvent dans des groupes (encastrement), mais elles sen autonomisent (découplage) - Les groupes se créent ou se modifient souvent à partir des relations (encastrement), mais sen autonomisent (découplage) - Encastrement : accroissement de la dépendance dune forme sociale par rapport à dautres (relation par rapport à groupe, ou linverse) -Découplage : accroissement de lautonomie dune forme sociale par rapport à dautres Encastrement et découplage

10 Critères empiriques Découplage dun collectif vis-à-vis de ses membres = substituabilité de ceux-ci, capacité du collectif à résister à la disparition de certains membres ou certaines relations. Découplage dune relation vis-à-vis dun collectif : non substituabilité des partenaires, capacité de la relation à survivre à la disparition du collectif. Découplage dun individu par rapport à un collectif : non substituabilité, imprévisibilité par rapport aux rôles

11 Médiation resources and collective RM Collective : set of actors sharing resources (R), some of these resources having mediating effects (M), specific to the members, then being mediating resources. Efficiency area of resources (actors having access to them) = the extension of the collective

12 RM Collective actor : collective with enough mediating resources decoupling it and allowing it to take decisions and giving him an agency ability

13 Mediation resources AND social relations What is the substance of social relations ? ????

14 Reciprocal knowledge Reciprocal involvment Reciprocal adjustement (non substituability) Trust What is the substance of social relations between individuals ? Reciprochal knowledge : from minimum (vague location, name), to maximum (private information) Reciprochal involvment : from minimum (admitting the existence of a relation in public) to maximum (affective) Reciprocal adjustment : partner cannot be substituted Trust : result from knowledge and involvment

15 Reciprocal involvment (contract) Reciprocal adjustement (non substituability) What is the substance of social relations (organizations) ? Reciprochal involvment : from minimum (exchanging informationb) to maximum (common agency) Reciprocal adjustment : partner cannot be substituted

16 Dyadic mediating resources What is the substance of social relations ? (2) Dyadic mediating resources :knowledge, involvment, trust, etc. allowing each patner to (more or less easily) ask the other to do something. Can be used only with that partner.

17 Dyadic mediating resources What is the substance of social relations (organizations) (2) ? Dyadic mediating resources : involvment (dyadic contract). Can be used only with that partner.

18 What is a social network ? M1 M2 M1 specific to the first two actors, M2 to the second and the third. A social network is a set of actors linked by dyadic mediating resources

19 Questions ?

20 Where do personal relations come from ? 1. From groups (circles) to relations

21 Where do personal relations come from ? 2. From relations to relations

22 Where do personal relations come from ? 3. From ressources to relations

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