UMSSW postdoctoral fellow Allison Hepworth, PhD has a new manuscript published in the Journal of Social Structure titled, "Exploring patterns of social relationships among food bloggers on Twitter using a social network analysis approach." Using data collected from the Twitter profiles of 44 prominent food bloggers, the researchers found bloggers formed a partially connected network, with bloggers in some topical subcategories showing more dense ties to other bloggers focused on the same topic (e.g., cocktails, culinary travel). The number of tweets a blogger favorited was positively associated with the number of Twitter followers they had within the network, possibly suggesting prominent food bloggers reward peer-supportive behavior that may increase their own social capital. In the future, Dr. Hepworth plans to examine how food bloggers' social network connections impact the spread of content and design practices on social media (e.g., video cooking tutorials).
A full version of this Open Access article is found at https://www.exeley.com/articles/1/42
This research began when Hepworth was a graduate student at Penn State University and was supported in part by a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship (DGE1255832). Dr. Hepworth is currently a postdoctoral fellow working with UMSSW Professor Dr. Lisa Berlin on early childhood prevention research studies.