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Abstract

Scholarship on social movements has emphasized the organizational mechanisms behind resource mobilization to achieve movement goals. Expanding upon this by incorporating literature on social networks, this paper analyzes the movement of information and resources along social ties for a broader understanding of the organizational dynamics of the environmental justice movement in Chicago. Employing interviews and observations, this thesis finds that resource exchange is not limited to physical resources, but includes research and information as well. I find that the social justice movement is structured into vertical and horizontal coalitions that often inhibit the movement’s success in achieving its goals. My findings suggest that the social movements literature, in addition to incorporating scholarship on social networks, could be made more robust by paying attention to the horizontal and vertical dimensions of coalitions

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