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National Cancer Institute

The Associations between Social Networks, Sense of Community, and Co-Location Among Healthcare Policy Scientists

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Kabo F. The Associations between Social Networks, Sense of Community, and Co-Location Among Healthcare Policy Scientists. Oral presentation at 2017 SciTS Conference. Clearwater Beach, FL. Jun 13, 2017. Insights Through Network Analysis. Online at:

The goal of our exploratory study was to analyze the association of social networks with sense of community (SOC) and spatial co-location. Our study sample was scientists at an institute for healthcare policy formed in 2011 by bringing together scientists from more than 20 different university units. In 2012, around 40% of the institute was co-located at a large research complex. We administered a two-part survey in late 2014 to the institute’s 390 scientists (125 co-located) plus 21 employees of non-university affiliates. Part 1 focused on interactions with colleagues, and Part 2 focused on socio-physical perceptions of the workplace. The overall response rate was 39% (N=152) and 53% for co-located scientists (N=66). We symmetrized the Part 1 item on interaction frequency and generated a network that was used to create three dependent variables (DVs): degree or number of nodes directly connected to a given individual; two-step reach or number of distinct individuals within two steps of a specific individual; and betweenness or how often a given individual falls on the shortest paths between other pairs of individuals. The independent variables (IVs) were a Part 2 item on the sense of community (SOC) in an individual’s unit, and co-location. For each DV we ran linear regressions controlling for organizational affiliation. To account for building layouts potentially impacting networks or sense of community, we clustered the standard errors by building. SOC was significantly correlated with degree (β = 0.00862, p < .01) and betweenness (β = 0.00206, p < .05). Co-located scientists had higher degree (β = 0.0339, p < .01) and two-step reach (β = 0.153, p < .001). Betweenness is only significantly correlated with SOC implying that individuals can be central in the institute’s network despite lack of colocation. The study demonstrates associations between spatial co-location, SOC, and social networks.



Type of Publication:

Oral presentation


scits 2017 conference, presentation, social network, co-location, health care policy scientists

Addresses these goal(s):

  • Conduct research on/evaluate team science
  • Collaborate virtually

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Resource created by Jane Hwang on 10/3/2017 5:39:12 PM.

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