How Young Adults View Social Connectedness and Access Resources

A Summary

Posted February 14, 2022
By Visible Network Labs
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Visible Network Labs (VNL), which published the report, has been hosting a social support research fellowship funded by the Annie E. Casey Foundation and has been working with four young adults to better understand the role of “social connectedness” — their relationships with others — in influencing outcomes for young people, ages 14–24.

VNL collaborated with the fellows to propose four research questions:

  • How do young adults think about and describe social connectedness?
  • How is social connectedness different for different groups of young people compared to older generations?
  • How do those differences impact how young adults access resources?
  • And how does their access to resources align with ways that youth want to connect with them?

This report focuses on providing insights on these research questions, using information from key informant interviews with young adults. The goal was to conduct exploratory interviews with young adults across the ages of 14–24 and from different locations throughout the United States. Critical to this project is getting the input of young adults representing different perspectives and opinions on how they view social connectedness, how they define social support and how they are accessing resources.

Findings & Stats

Statements & Quotations

Key Takeaway

The Benefits of Engaging With Young Adults in Research

Visible Network Labs worked closely with four young adult fellows from three states to explore new ideas around network science, social connectedness and design thinking to better understand how social support systems play a role in creating outcomes for young adults ages 14–24. The fellows’ perspectives and lived experiences informed the research study. The findings and the fellows will help shape the development of an assessment to measure social connectedness more effectively for young adults and better connect them to resources.