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Functions and Nature of Social Networks: An examination of the coordination roles
(Formation of Bonding Research Domain)

Project Leader
Yukiko Uchida, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Kokoro Research Center, Kyoto University

Collaborators from the Kokoro Research Center
Sakiko Yoshikawa, Ph.D., Professor, Kokoro Research Center, Kyoto University
Kosuke Takemura, Program-specific Researcher, Kokoro Research Center, Kyoto University

This research investigates the process of forming “social bonds” and the skills required to form such social relationships. It has been suggested that interdependent social relationships, which are prevalent in Japanese cultural contexts, are based on the social structure in agricultural communities. Focusing on the roles of extension officers in agricultural communities, we examine the skills that extension officers use for making effective social network and useful interpersonal relationships through a large-scale survey. We investigate, for example, 1) what skills they use to form groups, 2) the psychological effects caused by social network formation, and 3) the effects of on-the-job training on acquisition of social coordination skills.

For comparison, we also conduct surveys on social networks among students as well as business enterprises.

We believe that this will advance a more detailed understanding of what is important to establish trust in a community, by exploring underlying mechanisms behind interpersonal networks and communications. Our results will contribute to society by supporting individuals who play key roles not just in agricultural society, but also in other organizations, groups, and local communities.

For more detailed information, refer to the Collaborative Research Project activity report Wiki (B).