How People Who ‘Give’ Make Better Communities
Chapter 2: Social capital: a framework for understanding interpersonal relationships
Interpersonal relationships are described using the social capital conceptual framework. Problems encountered with defining and measuring social capital are outlined; problems which haveprevented this important factor from gettingmuch attention in policy choice. Whilst social capital is often defined in terms of trust-building social norms and networks, this chapter makes the case that ‘personal prosocial attitudes’ are important too. It goes on to propose thatalthough relationships are complex, the impact they have on the way a person allocates his or herresources are easier to measure. The resource transfers that are specific to civic (informal) sectordrivers are giving flows. The giving of time and money is not carried out for a prearranged return,and is thereforeparticularly dependent on the social norms, social networks and personal attitudes we are interested in identifying. Thus ‘giving’ acts as a measurable barometer of howprosocial or antisocial informal relations are.
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