The Benefits of Social Networking

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The Benefits of Social Networking Services
Dr Philippa Collin, University of Western Sydney Ms Kitty Rahilly, Inspire Foundation Dr Ingrid Richardson, Murdoch University Dr Amanda Third, University of Western Sydney

Literature Review

Literature Review: The Benefits of Social Networking Services

This research was made possible by the YAW -CRC‟s partner organisations, the in-kind support of researchers from the Inspire Foundation, University of Western Sydney and Murdoch University, and the participation of young people from the ReachOut.com community.

The authors are grateful to the following people for their advice on this review: Associate Professor Jane Burns, Chief Executive Officer, Cooperative Research Centre for Young People, Technology and Wellbeing Associate Professor Natalie Bolzan, University of Western Sydney Dr Lucas Walsh, Senior Executive, Research and Evaluation Foundation for Young Australians ISBN: 978-0-9871179-1-5

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Research Report

Literature Review: The Benefits of Social Networking Services

Preface
In December 2010, the Australian Government and Cooperative Research Centres Program announced a $27M investment towards the establishment of a world class research centre. The first of its kind, it is dedicated to working with young people to develop an d trial new technologies designed to improve mental health and promote wellbeing.

Led by the Inspire Foundation, an international non-government organisation, the Cooperative Research Centre for Young People, Technology and Wellbeing (YAW -CRC) brings together 63 partners in an enviable mix of world class youth researchers across 13 universities, innovative thinkers from industry and business, and mental health and youth advocates across the non government and government sector. Driven by the vision and passion of young people, the federal government‟s investment is matched by over $80M in cash and in kind contributions from YAW CRC participants.

Never before have the Australian youth and mental health sectors united so cohesively behind a single vision: to use technologies to ensure that young Australians are given the opportunity to grow up safe, happy, healthy and resilient. YAW-CRC‟s research agenda has been developed with over 600 young people. It focuses on achieving change through collaboration and partnership between researchers and end-users, defined as young people, parents, professionals and members of the community. YAW -CRC‟s work is organised into three separate but complementary research programs: Program One: Safe and Supportive: explores technologies as settings to promote cybersafety and strengthen the resilience and wellbeing of ALL young people. Program Two: Connected and Creative: examines how technologies can enable the good mental health of young people who are vulnerable or marginalised. Program Three: User Driven and Empowered: investigates how technologies can facilitate good mental health for young people experiencing mental health problems.

Technology has significantly changed the way in which young people interact with one a nother and the world around them. The majority of young Australians use the internet or a mobile phone to source information, engage and construct and maintain social networks. Technologies have dramatically transformed young people‟s relationships with one another, their families and communities. Young people‟s online behaviour is often not well understood resulting in a „digital disconnect‟ between young people‟s use of technology and the knowledge and concerns that parents, professionals and community members share about this use.

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Research Report

Literature Review: The Benefits of Social Networking Services

This report produced by the Cooperative Research Centre for Young People, Technology and Wellbeing presents research conducted by the Inspire Foundation, University of Western Sydney and Murdoch University. It summarises the current evidence relating to...
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