This paper analyzes the determinants and causes of communication in local elite networks. The database comprises four rural county elite networks from Poland and Slovakia. Socio spatial processes allowing a flexible incorporation of individual specific information are embedded within a logit framework. Empirical analysis focuses on the assessment of the hypotheses, whether preferences measured by socio demographic factors and political ideology or institutional settings (structure) influence individual communication in local elite networks. The results suggest that while in high performing communities institutional settings, i.e. a common membership in local organizations, are the most important factors determining communication, in low performing communities communication ties are stronger determined by actors’ preferences, i.e. ideological distances and socio demographic factors. Moreover, communication is more centralized for the latter when compared to the former socio spatial process.