ERIC Number: ED052425
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1971-Jun
Reference Count: 0
A Community Power Structure: A Methodological Analysis and Comparison.
Given, C. William; Mitchell, John B.
This study attempts to analyze and compare the structure of influence in two rural communities in southern Ohio with population centers of less than 10,000 inhabitants. (For a study of one of the communities only, see AC 010 451.) The two communities are studied as to reputed influentials, the business and economic subsystem, the civic organizational subsystem, the educational subsystem, and the governmental subsystem. A comparison of the two communities as to influence structure revealed both similarities and differences. One community, Riverview (a pseudonym) had a structure of influence directed by community influentials; in the other community, Newton (a pseudonym), the reputed community influentials, with one exception, seemed neither to be the source of influence nor closely allied to influential units of the community. Conclusions are that: (1) the reputational technique makes it difficult to locate and identify socially and geographically removed individuals, emerging influentials, and influentials no longer active in community decision making; (2) the social system as a conceptual tool is useful as a theoretical framework from which to analyze the structure of influence; (3) the vertical system concept is a useful tool in analyzing extra-community based influence; and (4) the two communities exhibit characteristics similar to larger ones. (DB)
Publication Type: N/A
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center, Wooster.
Identifiers: Hatch Project 304
Note: Part of Hatch Project 304 "A Study of the Decision-Making Process in Small Communities"