Metamodels, Selection Effects, and Neighborhood Effects
This chapter examines selection effects. On the “input” side of the boat metamodel, these pose a formidable alternate explanation of neighborhood effects. More recently, this problem has drawn attention as it shapes the “output” side of the boat model. The chapter first sketches different approaches to selection and different types of selection. It then outlines three different varieties of incidental selection dynamics: (i) those affecting spatial community or subcommunity contexts; (ii) those affecting nonspatial (usually social) contexts; and (iii) those affecting supracommunity contexts. Each of these links to a different type of metamodel and each presents distinct conceptual and analytic challenges. A closing comment suggests that researchers, at the outset of their investigation, simultaneously consider the potential relevance of all three varieties of selection effects. Which selection dynamics are deemed relevant, and how they are incorporated, will depend not only on the type of metamodel used by the researcher but also on the specific theories being tested.
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