19.10.2021 – Workshop with Rebecca Ritter-Grieshammer & Katherina Mludek

At the beginning of our workshop, given by Rebecca Grieshammer and Katherina Mludek, we had the chance to analyse our own networks, sort them into categories and write them down for comparison.

Main aspect in this task was to understand and visualize the participants of our surrounding, so it’s possible to extract conclusions out of the information given. It be shown how to connect parts of the network different, going after various goals and understand that information and social networks are never static. Networks are located on the meso-level. They stand between the individual (micro-level) and institutions (macro-level). The theories assume an interaction between the individual and networks, focusing on relationships and their formed structures. There is no such thing as “the” network theory. Rather, there are different theories or theoretical approaches.

Network theories focus on the embedding of individuals in their social environment. They assume that actions or identities and institutions interact with social structures.
Networks are thus attributed to the meso-level, located between individual action and institutions. However, as this chapter has also shown, there is no “one” network theory. In general, three different orientations can be distinguished: structuralist determinism, structuralist instrumentalism. Furthermore, they also vary in terms of their explanatory claims. Universal explanatory claim is pursued, “middle range theories”. They also serve as a basis for hypothesis generation. Which of the theories might be relevant for one’s own research cannot be clarified here.

Thanks to:

Rebecca Ritter-Grieshammer
& Katharina Mludek
from BURG Design Studies
project:mutual affairs