Untethered: A Primer on Social Isolation 2019
David Hsu, a social scientist, discusses the types of social isolation and profiles various organizations that are working on the issue. Hsu explains the challenges organizations face in connecting people as fewer people belong to institutions like Elks or Rotary. He believes that the experimentation going on today will yield new institutions that may look quite different from those of prior generations.
Your Brain Limits You to Just Five BFFs 2016
Study of billions of phone calls by 35 million people shows good evidence for the existence of the innermost and outermost layers of networks that Dunbar describes.
Cognitive Benefits of Online Social Networking for Healthy Older Adults 2016
Source: Journals of Gerontology
Study found that older adults that learned how to use a social networking website showed a significant increase in certain executive function and memory tasks, compared to no significant change in the control group.
The Limits of Friendship 2014
Source: New Yorker
Anthropologist Dunbar believes that people can only have about 150 people in their social networks, their “Dunbar Number,” which is actually a layered series of numbers. 150 is the number of people we call casual friends, 50 is the number of close friends, 15 are in our inner circle, and your close support group is about five people. Researchers have found that despite the fact that some people may have many more “friends” online, social networking sites don’t really change these numbers.