20 Aug 2017

How to measure social capital

A guide for the measurement of social capital at any level in any context. There is almost universal agreement that social capital is difficult to measure with a high degree of validity. Demand for relevant empirical measures has continued to outstrip supply. You have likely found this article because you are looking for (and not […]

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26 Jun 2017

Does social capital measurement magnify existing problems?

Measuring social capital in organisations may be like holding up a magnifying glass on existing problems – it’ll reinforce whatever it sees. The most important elements of organisational social capital are often not in the forefront of our minds. We’re generally not fully aware of the organisational culture: the norms, values, attitudes and beliefs, and […]

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05 Dec 2014

What does it mean to measure social capital?

To measure social capital means to attempt to quantify the stock of social capital in a given context. Unfortunately, there is considerable debate and controversy over the possibility, desirability, and practicability of measuring social capital. The measurement of social capital is closely linked to its definition and conceptualisation – both of which are contested in […]

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22 Mar 2013

Social capital measurement problems

For more than 10 years I have been following the literature on social capital measurement, and hoping that someone will publish a thorough synthesis and analysis of measurement techniques to produce at least a good guide to its measurement in different contexts. I suspect this is a (near) impossible task given the commonly discussed problems […]

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21 Mar 2013

What is the value of social capital?

Social capital is social relations that have productive benefits. The best way to understand social capital is through the old adage, “it’s not what you know, but who you know”. We intuitively understand that we can derive benefits from our relationships with others, whether it be as simple as finding a reliable mechanic (which can […]

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15 Jan 2013

Social capital measurement

Attempts to measure social capital are flawed by problems with separating form, source and consequences – a common problem with the conceptualisation of social capital. Unfortunately few researchers understand this complexity and readily confuse the three, resulting in measurement indicies that don’t rigorously reflect the state of social capital in the study context. Social

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