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Motivation vs. relevance: Using strong ties to find a job in Urban China

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dc.contributor.author Obukhova, Elena
dc.date.accessioned 2012-12-11T15:23:02Z
dc.date.available 2012-12-11T15:23:02Z
dc.date.issued 2012-05
dc.identifier.issn 0049-089X
dc.identifier.issn 1096-0317
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/1721.1/75369
dc.description.abstract While the idea that contacts matter in finding a job is intuitively appealing, we still do not know—after decades of research—how and why strong ties benefit job seekers. To resolve this confusion, we need to theorize how specific characteristics of ties are related to the mechanisms that make job search through contacts effective. We have reasons to expect that, while a contact’s motivation influences the likelihood that a job seeker receives an offer, her homophily with the job seeker on occupation and other job-relevant attributes influences the quality of the offer. The use of strong ties among university students to find jobs in China provides a unique opportunity to empirically isolate the relationship between contact characteristics and the mechanisms through which contacts benefit the job seeker. I tested my hypotheses with data on both the successful and unsuccessful job searches of 478 graduates of China’s flagship universities, who, as first-time job seekers, primarily used strong ties. Survey results are consistent with my hypotheses: job seekers who used strong ties to look for jobs had more offers—but not better offers—than those who used only formal methods. en_US
dc.description.sponsorship Social Science Research Council (U.S.) (International Pre-dissertation Fellowship) en_US
dc.description.sponsorship Social Science Research Council (U.S.) (Blakemore Fellowship for the Study of East Asian Languages) en_US
dc.language.iso en_US
dc.publisher Elsevier B.V. en_US
dc.relation.isversionof http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ssresearch.2011.12.010 en_US
dc.rights Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 en_US
dc.rights.uri http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0/ en_US
dc.source SSRN en_US
dc.title Motivation vs. relevance: Using strong ties to find a job in Urban China en_US
dc.type Article en_US
dc.identifier.citation Obukhova, Elena. “Motivation Vs. Relevance: Using Strong Ties to Find a Job in Urban China.” Social Science Research 41.3 (2012): 570–580. Web. en_US
dc.contributor.department Sloan School of Management en_US
dc.contributor.mitauthor Obukhova, Elena
dc.relation.journal Social Science Research en_US
dc.identifier.mitlicense OPEN_ACCESS_POLICY en_US
dc.eprint.version Author's final manuscript en_US
dc.type.uri http://purl.org/eprint/type/JournalArticle en_US
eprint.status http://purl.org/eprint/status/PeerReviewed en_US
dspace.orderedauthors Obukhova, Elena en


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