Organization of the social sphere and typology of the residential setting in Europe: how sociability affects the adoption of the mobile phone in rural and urban locations
Fortunati, L., & Taipale, S. (2012). Organization of the social sphere and typology of the residential setting in Europe: how sociability affects the adoption of the mobile phone in rural and urban locations. Technology in Society, 34 (1), 33-43. doi:10.1016/j.techsoc.2011.12.004
Published inTechnology in Society
© Elsevier Ltd. This is a final draft version of an article whose final and definitive form has been published by Elsevier.
The purpose of this study is to explore the role that the possession of the mobile phone plays in the organization of the relational sphere at a social level, in different geographical settings. The research questions were: is the possession of a mobile phone more connected to urban or to rural life, and does the possession of a mobile phone influence differently the organization of the social sphere in rural and urban settings? Data on the possession of mobile phones, the frequency of forms of communicative sociability, and various socio-demographic variables were collected by means of a phone survey in 2009. The sample is representative of the population in the five most populous and industrialized European countries: Italy, France, UK, Germany and Spain (N = 7255). The study shows that there is not a dichotomy between rural towns and urban territories regarding the possession of mobile phones. In addition, the study shows that the mobile phone is significantly related to the majority of forms of sociability, especially to those forms such as going out to restaurants, cinemas, and theatres, and visiting friends or inviting them to one’s own home. However, visiting relatives or inviting them to one’s home is not related, and participation in civil society activities is not connected to the possession of mobile phones. ...