First Advisor

Lee J. Haggerty

Date of Publication


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Systems Science


Systems Science




Women -- Social networks -- Morocco, Women -- Health and hygiene -- Morocco, Women -- Mental health -- Morocco



Physical Description

2, xiii, 319 leaves: ill. 28 cm.


Although there has been a great deal of research in the areas of social networks, social support and well-being over the past two decades, little of that research has been cross-cultural, and virtually none has been carried out in countries outside the West. The present study attempted to describe the structure and functioning of the social networks of a group of relatively modern urban Moroccan women, and the associations among their social networks, social support, physical health and psychological well-being. Extensive interviews were conducted with 108 married or previously-married women who were living in a middle-class neighborhood in Rabat, Morocco. Subjects were asked to identify social network members, defined as friends, family or others who provided various types of support in typically encountered life situations, or with whom the subject had negative interactions. Standardized self-report instruments were used to assess physical and psychological well-being, and to assess the occurrence of stressful life events. Additional observational data were collected on respondents' neighborhoods and immediate physical surroundings. A model describing the interactions between well-being, network structure and network function was tested using factor-analytic and set-regression techniques. Stressful life events predicted reduced physical well-being. Enhanced psychological functioning was predicted by reciprocity in relationships, marital satisfaction, and to a lesser degree, practical and emotional support. Contrary to predictions, patronage support was associated with both enhanced physical and psychological well-being. Results were generally consistent with Conservation of Resources (COR) theory, which predicts that the uniformly large and well-functioning networks found in this study would produce effect sizes that were small, but consistent with Western research findings.


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