Kat's Reviews > Connected: The Surprising Power of Our Social Networks and How They Shape Our Lives

Connected by Nicholas A. Christakis
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's review
Jan 29, 2011

really liked it
bookshelves: non-fiction-science-and-sociology
Read from January 29 to February 02, 2011

As work assignments go, reading a pretty interesting book and summarising it for marketers is not a bad one. Connected argues that personal behaviour is deeply affected by the social networks that people are involved in and that people one barely knows can have a profound impact on actions that we think are autonomous. They believe that social networks explain how society works and argue that they must be tended in order to enhance positive effects and mitigate negative ones. The authors back this up with a lot of fascinating studies but the marketing perspective did mean that when writing up case study examples, I missed out on some of my favourites.

Like Mass Psychogenic Illnesses, such as the laughing epidemic in Tanzania that spread like a disease. Or how marriage has been shown to increase a man's lifespan by 7 years but a woman's by only 2 - it is still to be determined whether it's marriage that is especially beneficial to a man, or specifically marriage to a woman. More studies on same sex partnerships ought to explain that but perhaps is not going to be enough of a reason to get some US states to allow it.

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