Scandinavian Working Papers in Economics

Working Papers,
University of Aarhus, Aarhus School of Business, Department of Economics

No 00-9: Social Capital: A Standard Method of Measurement

Lene Hjøllund and Gert Tinggaard Svendsen ()
Additional contact information
Lene Hjøllund: Department of Economics, Aarhus School of Business, Postal: Prismet, Silkeborgvej 2, DK 8000 Aarhus C, Denmark
Gert Tinggaard Svendsen: Department of Economics, Aarhus School of Business, Postal: Prismet, Silkeborgvej 2, DK 8000 Aarhus C, Denmark

Abstract: The purpose of this paper is to suggest a standard method of measurement for social capital. Various authors have investigated the influence of social capital on economic growth but still social capital has not been measured in any satisfactory way. So far, each survey has used its own ad hoc methodology due to the heterogeneity of the very definition of the concept of social capital. A consensus concerning a standardized method of measurement, has not yet been reached. Based on the existing theoretical and empirical approaches, we suggest the use of a questionnaire where the principal component analysis should be applied as the most appropriate method of measurement.

Keywords: Social capital; Capitalism; Communism; Factor analysis; Principal component analysis; Questionnaire

JEL-codes: A12; C71; D23; D70

27 pages, December 15, 2000

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