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International research on peer relations in the 21st century : What’s new?
This contribution gives an overview of three selected areas of peer relations research which have evolved or gained research interest over the last decade. First, we describe research about how peer relations may affect moral development. Second, we outline how advances in statistical methods such as Social Network Analyses (SNA) enhance our understanding of social network influences and relational processes within peer groups. Third, we present research findings showing that online communication (Internet and mobile phones) provides opportunities and risks for children’s and adolescents’ peer relations and adjustment. We also discuss what has been learned about bullying from these recent advances and emergent areas of research interest.