Sociologist To Explore the Social Uses of the Cell Phone

By Carmelle Druchniak
UNH News Bureau

DURHAM, N.H. -- Cell phones aren't just for emergencies anymore: one sociologist has studied how they're used to construct and maintain social networks.

Rich Ling, of Norway's Telenor Research Institute, will explore how cell phones connect us to each other literally and socially in a talk at the University of New Hampshire.

His lecture, "Always in Touch: Cell Phone Use in Norway," is scheduled Tuesday, Aug. 3, at 1 p.m. in Room 114, Horton Social Science Center. Sponsored by the UNH Department of Communication, this Brown Bag Lunch Lecture is free and open to the public.

Ling's research at the Telenor Research Institute has focused on the social uses of new information technologies. His talk will report on his quantitative and qualitative analyses of the use of cell phones among Norwegian adolescents and parents for construction and maintenance of social networks.

Ling was born and raised in the United States and received his Ph.D. in sociology from the University of Colorado in Boulder. Upon completion of his doctorate, he taught at the University of Wyoming in Laramie before going to Norway on a Marshall Foundation Grant. Support for Ling's visit comes from UNH's Institute for Policy and Social Science Research. For more information, call Joshua Meyrowitz at 603-862-3031. For parking information, call Parking Services at 862-1010.

July 28, 1999

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