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Article
Publication date: 25 June 2019

Sushant Ranjan and Rama Shankar Yadav

The purpose of this paper is to develop and empirically validate items on social isolation. The comprehensive literature review of existing studies on the measures of…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to develop and empirically validate items on social isolation. The comprehensive literature review of existing studies on the measures of social isolation, loneliness and the related construct was conducted. The paper seeks to conceptualize, validate and present items to measure social isolation.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper is based on theoretical and empirical investigation of the measures of social isolation, loneliness and related constructs such as social others, social loneliness and feeling of sociability. The items were generated through theoretical exploration of previous literature and later modified. The author examined the items through exploratory factor analysis, confirmatory factor analysis and further checked for external criterion validity. Data collected from 128 individuals, in India, were examined to design and validate the scale.

Findings

The finding of the paper is a ten-item social isolation scale. Using structural equation modeling, we have found extraversion and well-being significantly associated with final items in the present study, confirming the external quality of the scale.

Practical implications

Organizations may benefit by close examination of the presence of social isolation in employees along with providing support and assistance to employees so as to reduce negative consequences of social isolation and can address the well-being of the employee.

Originality/value

There is a dearth of developed and validated measures of social isolation in the literature. The study reveals the conceptualization and empirical validation of measures of social isolation in the Indian context so that researchers can move forward to develop theories on social isolation.

Details

Benchmarking: An International Journal, vol. 26 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1463-5771

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Article
Publication date: 9 September 2014

Love M. Chile, Xavier M. Black and Carol Neill

The purpose of this paper is to examine the significance of social isolation and the factors that create social isolation for residents of inner-city high-rise apartment…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine the significance of social isolation and the factors that create social isolation for residents of inner-city high-rise apartment communities. We critically examine how the physical environment and perceptions of safety in apartment buildings and the inner-city implicate the quality of interactions between residents and with their neighbourhood community.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors used mixed-methods consisting of survey questionnaires supplemented by semi-structured interviews and focus group discussions using stratified random sampling to access predetermined key strata of inner-city high-rise resident population. Using coefficient of correlation we examine the significance of the association between social isolation, age and ethnicity amongst Auckland's inner-city high-rise residents.

Findings

The authors found the experience and expression of social isolation consistent across all age groups, with highest correlation between functional social isolation and “being student”, and older adults (60+ years), length of tenure in current apartment and length of time residents have lived in the inner-city.

Research limitations/implications

As a case study, we did not seek in this research to compare the experience and expressions of social isolation in different inner-city contexts, nor of inner-city high-rise residents in New Zealand and other countries, although these will be useful areas to explore in future studies.

Practical implications

This study is a useful starting point to build evidence base for professionals working in health and social care services to develop interventions that will help reduce functional social isolation amongst young adults and older adults in inner-city high-rise apartments. This is particularly important as the inner-city population of older adults grow due to international migration, and sub-national shifts from suburbs to the inner-cities in response to governmental policies of urban consolidation.

Originality/value

By identifying two forms of social isolation, namely functional and structural social isolation, we have extended previous analysis of social isolation and found that “living alone” or structural social isolation did not necessarily lead to functional social isolation. It also touched on the links between functional social isolation and self-efficacy of older adults, particularly those from immigrant backgrounds.

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Article
Publication date: 12 September 2019

Shanthi Johnson, Juanita Bacsu, Tom McIntosh, Bonnie Jeffery and Nuelle Novik

Social isolation and loneliness are global issues experienced by many seniors, especially immigrant and refugee seniors. Guided by the five-stage methodological framework…

Abstract

Purpose

Social isolation and loneliness are global issues experienced by many seniors, especially immigrant and refugee seniors. Guided by the five-stage methodological framework proposed by Arksey and O’Malley and more recently Levac, Colquhoun and O’Brien, the purpose of this paper is to explore the existing literature on social isolation and loneliness among immigrant and refugee seniors in Canada.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors conducted a literature search of several databases including: PubMed; MEDLINE; CINAHL; Web of Science; HealthStar Ovid; PschyInfo Ovid; Social Services Abstracts; AgeLine; Public Health Database, Google Scholar and Cochrane Library. In total, 17 articles met the inclusion criteria.

Findings

Based on the current literature five themes related to social isolation and loneliness emerged: loss; living arrangements; dependency; barriers and challenges; and family conflict.

Research limitations/implications

Given the increasing demographic of aging immigrants in Canada, it is useful to highlight existing knowledge on social isolation and loneliness to facilitate research, policy and programs to support this growing population.

Practical implications

The population is aging around the world and it is also becoming increasingly diverse particularly in the high-income country context. Understanding and addressing social isolation is important for immigrant and refugee seniors, given the sociocultural and other differences.

Social implications

Social isolation is a waste of human resource and value created by seniors in the communities.

Originality/value

The paper makes a unique contribution by focusing on immigrant and refugee seniors.

Details

International Journal of Migration, Health and Social Care, vol. 15 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1747-9894

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Article
Publication date: 12 March 2018

Roser Beneito-Montagut, Nizaiá Cassián-Yde and Arantza Begueria

Social isolation and loneliness are recognised social, health and wellbeing problems that particularly affect later life. They have been the subject of many recent…

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Abstract

Purpose

Social isolation and loneliness are recognised social, health and wellbeing problems that particularly affect later life. They have been the subject of many recent studies. Studies examining the role of the internet in addressing these problems have multiplied. However, it is still not known whether internet-mediated social interaction has any role in mitigating social isolation and or loneliness. To address this gap, the purpose of this paper is to review previous research that investigates the relationship between internet use for communication and social isolation and loneliness.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper reviews the empirical literature published since 2000 and expands on previous literature reviews by including a variety of research designs and disciplines.

Findings

Despite the recent increase in studies, there is still little evidence to show internet effects on social isolation and loneliness. It is concluded that future research programmes aimed at reducing them by the use of the internet should include more robust methodological and theoretical frameworks, employ longitudinal research designs and provide a more nuanced description of both the social phenomena (social isolation and loneliness) and internet-mediated social interaction.

Originality/value

Previous reviews are not restricted to internet-based studies and include several types of interventions aiming at reducing social isolation and/or loneliness. They do not attempt to disentangle the internet effects of social isolation and loneliness.

Details

Quality in Ageing and Older Adults, vol. 19 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1471-7794

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Article
Publication date: 6 November 2017

Kathleen Bentein, Alice Garcia, Sylvie Guerrero and Olivier Herrbach

The purpose of this paper is to investigate the consequences of experiencing social isolation in a context of dirty work. Relying on an integration of the job…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to investigate the consequences of experiencing social isolation in a context of dirty work. Relying on an integration of the job demands-resources model (Schaufeli and Bakker, 2004) with the social identity approach (Ashforth and Kreiner, 1999), the paper posits that perceived social isolation prevents the development of defense mechanisms that could counter the occupational stigma, and thus tends to increase perceptions of stigmatization, and to decrease perceptions of the prosocial impact of their work. Through these two perceptions, perceived social isolation indirectly affects emotional exhaustion and work engagement.

Design/methodology/approach

Research hypotheses are tested among a sample of 195 workers in the commercial cleaning industry who execute physically tainted tasks.

Findings

Results support the research model. Perceived prosocial impact mediates the negative relationship between perceived social isolation and work engagement, and perceived stigmatization mediates the positive relationship between perceived social isolation and emotional exhaustion.

Research limitations/implications

This research contributes to the dirty work literature by empirically examining one of its implicit assumptions, namely, that social isolation prevents the development of coping strategies. It also contributes to the literature on well-being and work engagement by demonstrating how they are affected by the social context of work.

Originality/value

The present paper is the first to study the specific challenges of social isolation in dirty work occupations and its consequences.

Details

Personnel Review, vol. 46 no. 8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0048-3486

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Article
Publication date: 1 December 2020

Nashaat H. Hussein

The purpose of this paper is to investigate the way people in a collectivist culture, particularly Egyptians, define social isolation and to understand the effect of social

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to investigate the way people in a collectivist culture, particularly Egyptians, define social isolation and to understand the effect of social isolation on maintaining traditional networks of social relations.

Design/methodology/approach

To do this, online ethnographic semi-structured interviews were carried out with a purposeful sample of non-infected Egyptians who have access to social media networks.

Findings

Although collectivism may be perceived as a risk factor in developing countries, it has positive effects on reducing the spread of COVID-19 among Egyptians through the preventive measures it entails. Increased fear, worries and anxiety about the family and in-group members is a limiting factor against the prevalence of the disease, despite the emotional hardships experienced by individuals.

Research limitations/implications

The sample interviewed does not refer to the entire Egyptian population, since the number of social media users represents 43.5% of Egyptians. Therefore, generalization of research data may be problematic.

Practical implications

The paper aims to raise awareness of the important of stressing collectivist character traits since they can help develop more preventive measures against the spread of the disease. Research findings also indicate that there is a need to coexist with the disease under controlled conditions to lessen the psychological risks of social isolation.

Originality/value

In light of the paucity of research carried out on COVID-19, the present research provides a pioneering insight into the meaning of social isolation in a collectivist culture and the distinctive local methods adopted by people to maintain their networks of social relations.

Details

International Journal of Sociology and Social Policy, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-333X

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Article
Publication date: 12 June 2017

Toby Smith

The purpose of this paper is to explore the concepts of social isolation and loneliness in relation to people with chronic musculoskeletal pain. Through these concepts…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore the concepts of social isolation and loneliness in relation to people with chronic musculoskeletal pain. Through these concepts, biological, psychological and social factors will be examined to consider how we can identify people at risk of social isolation and loneliness who have chronic musculoskeletal pain and then how health professionals may intervene to reduce their effects.

Design/methodology/approach

Conceptual paper.

Findings

Social isolation and loneliness are often evident in the situation of people with chronic musculoskeletal diseases. This may be bi-directional where pains may lead to social isolation and loneliness, but equally, social isolation and loneliness may exacerbate pain. Interventions to improve the symptoms of chronic musculoskeletal pain, and also approaches around social participation and engagement should be adopted in combination to ameliorate this potentially disabling scenario.

Originality/value

There remains limited evidence around the prevalence and management of social isolation and loneliness for people with chronic musculoskeletal pain. By raising awareness of social isolation and loneliness in this population, people with chronic musculoskeletal pain may be better supported to reduce the negative impact that social isolation and loneliness can have on their health and well-being.

Details

Quality in Ageing and Older Adults, vol. 18 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1471-7794

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Article
Publication date: 1 March 1985

Martin Bulmer

Limits may be placed on sociability through a sense of social superiority (middle‐class people separating themselves from working‐class on a housing estate), through…

Abstract

Limits may be placed on sociability through a sense of social superiority (middle‐class people separating themselves from working‐class on a housing estate), through strength of sociability within the nuclear family limiting outside contacts, or through placing a value on solitude and personal privacy. Inadequate attention has been paid to those who actually “choose” social isolation; in particular, the group formed by those who never marry but choose the single life and its attendant type of social isolation would be worth study, giving consideration to the reasons behind such choices.

Details

International Journal of Sociology and Social Policy, vol. 5 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-333X

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Article
Publication date: 3 December 2019

Angana Debnath and Piyal Basu Roy

Alienation and isolation is an off-seen social aspect of gerontological crises. The purpose of this paper is to focus on the social isolation and loneliness of older…

Abstract

Purpose

Alienation and isolation is an off-seen social aspect of gerontological crises. The purpose of this paper is to focus on the social isolation and loneliness of older people that emerge from inadequate integration with the social network, coupled with increasing social chasm between the aged and the young. The sample population is Cooch Behar municipal town, West Bengal, India.

Design/methodology/approach

To conduct the study, data have been collected through a questionnaire followed by purposive random sampling and analyzed with the help of loneliness scale and correlated variables.

Findings

The study reveals that marital status, social network, social class and health are some of the parameters that influence the level of social isolation and loneliness among the older people.

Originality/value

The result highlights the importance of social relationships and interaction on the ageing process.

Details

Working with Older People, vol. 24 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1366-3666

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Article
Publication date: 22 June 2021

Emma Smith, Melody Carter, Elaine Walklet and Paul Hazell

This paper aims to explore how enforced forms of social isolation arising from the first COVID-19 lockdown influenced experiences of problem substance use, relapse and…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to explore how enforced forms of social isolation arising from the first COVID-19 lockdown influenced experiences of problem substance use, relapse and coping strategies for recovery in individuals engaging with harm reduction recovery services.

Design/methodology/approach

A qualitative semi-structured interview design was adopted for this research. Seven participants were recruited from a harm reduction recovery organisation. During their initial interview, participants volunteered information regarding their experience of the first lockdown due to emerging concerns of the COVID-19 pandemic. Participants completed a second semi-structured interview at the end of the first lockdown regarding their experience of enforced isolation during this time.

Findings

Three themes identified from the analysis were isolation resulting in hindered human capabilities; adjusting to a new normal: an individual experience; and unexpected benefits to recovery resulting from isolation. While some participants reported boredom, loneliness and relapse events, others reported that the national response to the virus did not adversely affect them as they had already adjusted to living in a state of anxiety, isolation and uncertainty. These findings illuminate negative, neutral and positive aspects of substance use recovery throughout the COVID-19 lockdown as well as highlighting the complex and individualised role that social connectedness plays in relapse occurrence.

Originality/value

Participants reported differences in how they were affected by the pandemic, leading to theoretical implications for the effect of social isolation on recovery. For this reason, individuals with a history of dependency should be considered potentially vulnerable to the effects of enforced isolation and should be supported accordingly.

Details

Drugs and Alcohol Today, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1745-9265

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