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Journal section "Social development"

Social Capital in a Region: Revisiting the Measurement and Building of an Indicator Model

Afanas’ev D.V., Guzhavina T.A., Mekhova A.A.

6 (48), 2016

Afanas’ev D.V., Guzhavina T.A., Mekhova A.A. Social Capital in a Region: Revisiting the Measurement and Building of an Indicator Model. Economic and Social Changes: Facts, Trends, Forecast, 2016, no. 6 (48), pp. 110-125. DOI: 10.15838/esc.2016.6.48.6

DOI: 10.15838/esc.2016.6.48.6

Abstract   |   Authors   |   References
The concept of social capital is gaining certain stability in the social studies. The heuristic potential of the concept is confirmed by numerous studies which prove the positive impact of levels and types of social capital on a wide range of social phenomena. Approaches to theoretical justification of social capital empirical appraisal are being formed, which is particularly relevant amid of general economic and structural crisis. However, science still lacks a generally accepted definition of social capital and the agreement on the ways to measure it. The article aims to theoretically justify the building of an indicator model for empirical measurement of social capital, which implies a set of indicators generated for a particular conceptual framework and helping obtain organized information about the phenomenon under study in order to identify the correlation between its components. The article is intended to foreground the need for social capital empirical measurement and comparison. The article contains analysis of theoretical approaches to the definition of social capital, notes its multi-aspect nature and productive ideas about the triadic nature of social capital lying at the interface between sociology, political science and economics. On the basis of generalization of positions concerning the types of social capital presented in scientific literature, the authors make a conclusion about the fundamental importance of distinguishing bridging and bonding social capital; of the necessity to identify special indicators for these types of social capital and their formal and informal components. The article presents the authors’ approach to building a social capital indicator model, including cognitive (readiness to join, responsibility for the state of affairs) and structural elements (degree of participation in public activity, degree of participation in political activity, ability to influence the state of affairs), which helps obtain a set of generalized and systematized components and measurements of social capital of a region structured by both institutional form (formal-informal) and location. The authors emphasize their position regarding the relevance of regional aspects of social capital

Keywords

social capital, index method, social capital components, levels of social capital, measurement indicators, indicator model of social capital measurement

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