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Social Capital and Community. “If people feel safe, happy, and secure they will work together to organize and interact to build a stronger community.”.

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Social Capital and Community

“If people feel safe, happy, and secure they will work together to organize and interact to build a stronger community.”

SOCIAL CAPITAL-group level- “Features of social organizations such as networks, norms, and trust, that facilitate coordination and cooperation for mutual benefit.

NEGATIVE SOCIAL CAPITAL-someone or some group that is not open or not in the best interest of the community.


Loss of Social Capital

Americans are self centered

Less engaged in community activities

Attributed to more TV watching




Located in the bottom land of the Platt River and about 5 Miles off of I-80

approx 4,200 people

Community Center

Science Center

Farm Museum


Ethanol Plant

Telecommunications Firm

Software Company


Industrial Park

Aurora, Nebraska

Located south of the Platte River & about 3 miles off of I-80

Pop. 4,256

Bremer Community Center

Edgerton Explorit Center

Stuhr Museum


Ethanol Plant

Hamilton Communications

Software Company


Industrial Park


“Solidale” Ethanol Plant

Every level of government involved

Support from various groups

Profit to Farmers

No opposition


Types of Social Capital

BONDING SOCIAL CAPITAL-connections among individuals and groups with similar backgrounds

BRIDGING SOCIAL CAPITAL-connects diverse groups within the community and to groups outside the community.

Horizontal dimension-learn from each other

Vertical dimension-linked to outside resources and organizations

Flexible-people should be able to come and go

Permeable boundaries-the community grows

LINKING SOCIAL CAPITAL-promote involvement, inclusion, and empowerment


ESI and Absence of Social Capital

If Bonding and Bridging are High then there is effective community action

ESI (Entrepreneurial Social Infrastructure)

Give and Receive

Overall good place to live

If Bonding and Bridging are Low then there is extreme individualism and disorganization

If communities lack social capital than the capacity for change is low


Influence and Conflict of Social Capital

Bonding is low and Bridging is high then power is concentrated

Bonding is high and Bridging is low then conflict within the community


Entrepreneurial Social Infrastructure

ESI-measurable form of community action

Collective effort

Willingness to consider and accept alternatives



LEGITIMATION OF ALTERNATIVES-Many perspectives are taken into account and respect is maintained

“Communities were controversy is openly aired and accessible and factual information drives out rumors, are best able to process information from a variety of sources and make choices that have the potential to enhance community well-being.”


A. Depersonalization of Politics-Controversy does not turn into name calling

B. Development of Extra Community Linkages-seek resources and information from outside communities

C. Diverse Community Leadership-people rotate through leadership positions within the community

D. Approaches to Involving Excluded Groups-encouraging the excluded groups of people to form their own organization

WIDESPREAD RESOURCE MOBILIZATION-resources in the community must be fully accessible


Social Capital Benefits

Safety and Security

Leadership and Vision

Mutual Relationships and Trust

Adapting to Change