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Title: What do we know about the relationship between internet-mediated interaction and social isolation and loneliness in later life?
Author: Beneito Montagut, Roser  
Cassián Yde, Nizaiá  
Begueria Muñoz, Arantzazu
Others: Cardiff University
Universität Siegen
Universitat Oberta de Catalunya (UOC)
Keywords: social isolation
social relationships
later life
Issue Date: 6-Dec-2017
Publisher: Quality in Ageing and Older Adults
Citation: Beneito-Montagut, R., Cassián-Yde, N. & Begueria, A. (2018). What do we know about the relationship between internet-mediated interaction and social isolation and loneliness in later life?. Quality in Ageing and Older Adults, 19(1), 14-30. doi: 10.1108/QAOA-03-2017-0008
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Abstract: 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 internetmediated 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.
Language: English
ISSN: 1471-7794MIAR
Appears in Collections:Articles

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