Mitchell Centre Seminar Series
|Starts:||16:00 9 May 2018|
|Ends:||16:00 9 May 2018|
|What is it:||Seminar|
|Organiser:||School of Social Sciences|
Vincent Lorant and SILNE-R consortium, Institute of Health and Society, UCLouvain, Belgium
The evolving social structure of adolescent smokers: a longitudinal study in six European cities.
Adolescents’ friendship ties at school are key contributors to smoking behaviour thanks to two properties: homophily and centrality. Indeed, in a friendship network, smokers are more likely to be connected to each other (homophily) and also to be more central. Yet, these two properties may have evolved over time, under the increasing pressure of smoking denormalisation and under more stringent school tobacco control policies. We tested two competing hypotheses with different policy implications: “safety in numbers” and “avoidance of stigma”. The “Safety in numbers” hypothesis suggests that more stringent tobacco control policies lead to greater homophily among smokers, as a social shield; on the opposite, according to “stigma avoidance”, smokers adapt to school tobacco control policies (STPs) by diversifying their social ties to avoid identification and more stringent enforcement of STPs. This study describes changes, at the school level, in the social structure of smokers and non-smokers in 38 schools that participated in two waves of data collection, in 2013 and 2016.
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