Numbers, Facts and Trends Shaping Your World

Social Isolation and New Technology

Appendix A: Extended Literature Review

What role might new technologies play in how core networks have changed in the past 20 years?


Other scholarship provides some support for the notion that mobile phone use may play a role in a trend toward smaller, less diverse core networks.


At the same time, there is less evidence to suggest that internet use narrows and constrains social networks.


[40, 41]

There is also little evidence to suggest that internet use encourages people to withdraw from neighborhood networks, local institutions, or public settings.

[16, 48]

In sum, while the rise of the internet and mobile connectivity coincides with the reported decline of core discussion networks, the mixed evidence on mobile phone use and internet activities does not provide a clear link between these trends. However, until now, no study has focused directly on the composition of core networks and the role of internet and mobile phone use.

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