Social Capital


  • Rosalind Edwards

Document type: Encyclopedia Entry

Appears in: Work and Family Encyclopedia

Year: 2006


  • Changing Families
  • Community
  • Gender
  • Public Policy
  • Social Networks


  • Social Work


Broadly, social capital concerns the norms and values people hold that result in, and are the result of, collective and socially negotiated ties and relationships. It is integrally related to other forms of capital, such as human (skills and qualifications), economic (wealth), cultural (modes of thinking) and symbolic (prestige and personal qualities). For example, economic capital augments social capital, and cultural capital can be translated readily into human and social capitals. In terms of social capital, where people share a sense of identity, hold similar values, trust each other and reciprocally do things for each other, then this is felt to have an impact on the social, political and economic nature of the society in which we live. Thus the concept of social capital has gained a considerable influence in policy-making circles.

Link: Social_Capital encyclopedia