Communication, Twostep Flow of

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


The concept of the 'two-step flow of communication' suggests that the flow of information and influence from the mass media to their audiences involves two steps: from the media to certain individuals (i.e., the opinion leaders) and from them to the public. Since the introduction of the two-step flow model and the opinion leadership concept, numerous studies have sought to advance both the understanding and applicability of these ideas to various areas from marketing and consumer behavior, to fashion, politics, and scientific innovations. However, the concept has been a subject of growing criticism, leading to a decline in the popularity and attraction of the original concept and almost to its total collapse. Nevertheless, the paradigm's 'fight for survival,' through a dynamic exchange of arguments, criticism, response, and debate, resulted in several modifications of the original model.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationInternational Encyclopedia of the Social & Behavioral Sciences: Second Edition
EditorsJames D. Wright
Number of pages3
ISBN (Electronic)9780080970875
ISBN (Print)9780080970868
StatePublished - 26 Mar 2015

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2015 Elsevier Ltd All rights reserved.


  • Communication
  • Influence
  • Mass media
  • Opinion leadership
  • Paul Lazarsfeld

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Social Sciences


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