A cross-cultural study to explore the differential impacts of online social capital on psychosocial outcomes

Heyla A Selim*, Graham G Scott, Linda K. Kaye

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)
6 Downloads (Pure)


The nature of the relationship between online social capital and well-being may be impacted by a number of important factors, such as identity motives and self-presentational strategies. Additionally, there are likely to be cross-cultural variations in this respect, given that social internet use can vary considerably cross-nationally. Participants (N = 682) from the UK and Saudi Arabia completed questionnaires which took cross-sectional measures of online social capital (bonding and bridging), identity motives, self-presentational strategies and aspects of well-being. Findings revealed some cross-cultural variations in the extent to which online social capital operated on identity-related factors and well-being. Namely, online bridging was distinctly more prominent for Saudi users compared to UK users, in its relationships with all identity motives and some cascading effects on aspects of well-being. For UK users, online bonding appeared to hold significant relationships with the identity motives of efficacy and belonging, and these mediated the link onto loneliness and life satisfaction. Overall, this suggests that online social capital varies cross-culturally, specifically in respect of how different types of online social resources impact upon well-being via varying presentational efforts.
Original languageEnglish
Article number100087
JournalComputers in Human Behavior Reports
Early online date8 May 2021
Publication statusPublished - 31 Jul 2021


  • online social capital
  • identity motives
  • impression management
  • loneliness
  • happiness
  • life satisfaction


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