Structural Analysis of Social Capital: Institution, Relations, and Order

Zheng-dong LI


Current studies on social capital are both broad and in-depth in terms of contents and forms as well. The structure among various forms, however, seems to be a sort of in disorder, without establishing a institution with a relatively clear dividing line. This paper believes that social capital doesn’t include microscopic forms of trust, norm, and network, etc only. We, through in-depth studies from macro-structure aspect, could discover that social capital in fact exists in three broader fields of social institution, social relations, and social order. Social institution, social relations, and social order are essentially the initial state of social capital. Every specific form of social capital is unexceptionally the result of interrelation and interaction among these three. Every single form of social capital doesn’t purely belong to a certain field; it closely relates to other fields instead. And it even is the combination of multiple-form social capital. Both structural and resource natures of social capital thread together instead of being discrete. Keywords: social capital; social institution; social relations; and social orderRésumé: Les études actuelles sur le capital social sont à la fois larges et profondes en termes de contenu et des formes. La structure des formes diverses, cependant, semble être une sorte de désordre, sans une ligne de démarcation relativement claire. Ce document estime que le capital social n'inclut pas de formes microscopiques de confiance, ni de normes, ni de réseaux. A travers des études en profondeur à partir des aspects macro-structurels, nous avons pu découvrir que le capital social existe en fait dans trois domaines plus larges, c'est-à-dire l'institution sociale, les relations sociales et l'ordre social. L'institution sociale, les relations sociales et l'ordre social sont essentiellement l'état initial du capital social. Chaque forme spécifique de capital social est sans exception le résultat de l'inter-relation et l'interaction entre ces trois. Toute forme unique du capital social n'appartient pas purement à un certain domaine, par contre, elle est étroitement liée à d'autres domaines. Et elle peut même être la combinaison de multiples formes de capital social. Au lieu d'être isolées, la nature structurelle et les ressources du capital social sont liées.Mots-clés: capital social, institution sociale, relations sociales, ordre social

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