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Putting social capital in perspective: a case of unrealistic expectations?

By Catherine Campbell


The concept of social capital has been around for much longer than Putnam's 1993 book, (Making Democracy Work) through the work of Coleman, Bourdieu and others (see Baron, Field and Schuller, 2000, for a review). However, certainly in my fields of interest, viz: the areas of health promotion and community development, it was this book of Putnam's that catapulted the concept of 'social capital' to the centre stage of an extraordinary range of research and policy agenda’s. In this book, Putnam defines social capital in terms of the community cohesion associated with: the existence of co-operative and accessible community networks/ organisations; high levels of participation in these; a strong sense of local identity; and high levels of trust, mutual help and support amongst community members

Topics: HM Sociology
Publisher: Gender Institute, London School of Economics
Year: 2001
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Provided by: LSE Research Online

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