Javascript is not activated in your browser. This website needs javascript activated to work properly.
You are here

The Influence of Social Network Characteristics on Peer Clustering in Smoking : A Two-Wave Panel Study of 19- and 23-Year-Old Swedes

  • Alexander Miething
  • Mikael Rostila
  • Christofer Edling
  • Jens Rydgren
Publishing year: 2016-10-11
Language: English
Publication/Series: PLoS ONE
Volume: 11
Issue: 10
Document type: Journal article
Publisher: Public Library of Science

Abstract english

The present study examines how the composition of social networks and perceived relationship content influence peer clustering in smoking, and how the association changes during the transition from late adolescence to early adulthood.
The analysis was based on a Swedish two-wave survey sample comprising ego-centric network data. Respondents were 19 years old in the initial wave, and 23 when the follow-up sample was conducted. 17,227 ego-alter dyads were included in the analyses, which corresponds to an average response rate of 48.7 percent. Random effects logistic regression models were performed to calculate gender-specific average marginal effects of social network characteristics on smoking.
The association of egos’ and alters’ smoking behavior was confirmed and found to be stronger when correlated in the female sample. For females, the associations decreased between age 19 and 23. Interactions between network characteristics and peer clustering in smoking showed that intense social interactions with smokers increase egos’ smoking probability. The influence of network structures on peer clustering in smoking decreased during the transition from late adolescence to early adulthood.
The study confirmed peer clustering in smoking and revealed that females’ smoking behavior in particular is determined by social interactions. Female smokers’ propensity to interact with other smokers was found to be associated with the quality of peer relationships, frequent social interactions, and network density. The influence of social networks on peer clustering in smoking decreased during the transition from late adolescence to early adulthood.


  • Sociology (excluding Social Work, Social Psychology and Social Anthropology)
  • Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology
  • smoking
  • social networks
  • peer effects


  • ISSN: 1932-6203
Christofer Edling
E-mail: christofer [dot] edling [at] soc [dot] lu [dot] se


Faculty of Social Sciences

+46 46 222 88 62



Centre for Economic Demography




+46 46 222 88 62




I earned my PhD from Stockholm University in 1999. Between 2002 and 2005 I was Torgny Segerstedt Pro Futura Fellow at the Swedish Collegium for Advanced Study at Uppsala University. I received my Docent-title in 2003, and was appointed Associate Professor at Stockholm University in 2004. From 2006 to 2008 I was Head of the Department of Sociology at Stockholm university. Before coming to Lund in 2012 I served as Full Professor of Sociology at Jacobs University, Bremen, Germany. I have been a fellow at Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin (2004/05) and Stellenbosch Institute for Advanced Study (2013).

Department of Sociology
Lund University
Visiting address: Sandgatan 11, House G, Lund
Postal address: Box 114 , SE-221 00 LUND, SWEDEN
Telephone: Student Office +46 46-222 88 44, Lund University Switchboard +46 46-222 00 00

Faculty of Social Sciences