Laura Gee, Tufts University

Social Networks and Labor Markets: How Strong Ties Relate to Job Transmission Using Facebook's Social Network

October 2, 2013 | 11:45am - 1:00pm | Cotting Conference Room | Open to public

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​Social Networks and Labor Markets: How Strong Ties Relate to Job Transmission​ On Facebook's Social Network

Laura Gee and Jason Jones


​ABSTRACT
Most people find jobs via social network contacts. Since helping friends is costly, one might assume that close friends help more. Granovetter (1973), however, argued most jobs come from weaker ties. We test this "strength of weak ties" hypothesis using millions of employment histories from an online social network and address endogenous tie strength through timing, individual fixed effects, and control variables. First, we find that most jobs come from weaker ties, but only because weaker ties are numerous in networks. Second, we show when stronger ties exist they help more, suggesting that strong relationships are important for finding employment.

*For a copy of the paper, please email sraza@hbs.edu