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Social roles and the evolution of networks in extreme and isolated environmentsThis article reports on the evolution of network structure as it relates to formal and informal social roles in well-bounded, isolated groups. Research was conducted at the Amundsen-Scott South Pole Station. Data were collected on crewmembers' networks of social interaction over each of three winter-over periods, when the station is completely isolated. In addition, data were collected on the informal roles played by crewmembers (e.g., instrumental leadership, expressive leadership). The study found that globally coherent networks in winter-over groups were associated with group consensus on the presence of critically important informal social roles (e.g., expressive leadership) where global coherence is the extent to which a network forms a single group composed of a unitary core and periphery as opposed to being factionalized into two or more subgroups. Conversely, the evolution of multiple subgroups was associated with the absence of consensus on critical informal social roles, above all the critically important role of instrumental leader.
Document ID
Document Type
Reprint (Version printed in journal)
External Source(s)
Johnson, Jeffrey C. (East Carolina University United States)
Boster, James S.
Palinkas, Lawrence A.
Date Acquired
August 21, 2013
Publication Date
April 1, 2003
Publication Information
Publication: The Journal of mathematical sociology
Volume: 27
Issue: 3-Feb
ISSN: 0022-250X
Subject Category
Behavioral Sciences
Funding Number(s)
Distribution Limits
NASA Program Biomedical Research and Countermeasures
Non-NASA Center
NASA Discipline Space Human Factors