Social cohesion, social capital and the neighbourhood
SAGE Publications Ltd
In current theoretical and policy debates concerning social cohesion, the neighbourhood has re-emerged as an important setting for many of the processes which supposedly shape social identity and life-chances. It is in this context of a renewal of interest in local social relations and particularly the deployment of notions of social capital that this paper offers a critical review of a wide-ranging literature. The paper explores initially and briefly the idea that societies face a new crisis of social cohesion and outlines the key dimensions of societal cohesion. The core of the paper is then devoted to an examination of where the contemporary residential neighbourhood fits into these wider debates, particularly in relation to the interaction between social cohesion and social capital. In this context, some of the key debates around the concept of social capital are outlined. In moving beyond abstraction, the paper also shows how social capital can be broken down into relevant domains for policy action at the neighbourhood level and how concepts such as social cohesion and social capital can be operationalised for research purposes.
Copyright © 2001 The Editors of Urban Studies.
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Forrest, R., & Kearns, A. (2001). Social cohesion, social capital and the neighbourhood. Urban Studies, 38(12), 2125-2143. doi: 10.1080/00420980120087081