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What Do You Know, Who Do You Know?: School as a Site for the Production of Social Capital and its Effects on Income Attainment in Poland and the Czech Republic

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  • Karen Buerkle

    (University of California)

  • Alya Guseva

    (University of California)

Abstract

This paper criticizes traditional approaches to stratification, which suggest that education contributes to inequality solely by endowing people with different amounts of human capital (knowledge and skills) or credentials. What these approaches overlook is the social component of education-friends, acquaintances and other connections one accumulates while in school. These connections reduce the uncertainty inherently present in the hiring process by compensating for lack of information with trust. We argue that social capital gained while in school has an independent effect on individual income, and show how this effect varies by education and experience levels. Conceptualizing schooling as an important source of social capital and finding ways to disentangle the effects of human and social capital on individual income are a contribution that economic sociologists can make to the study of education and inequality. Copyright 2002 The American Journal of Economics and Sociology.

Suggested Citation

  • Karen Buerkle & Alya Guseva, 2002. "What Do You Know, Who Do You Know?: School as a Site for the Production of Social Capital and its Effects on Income Attainment in Poland and the Czech Republic," American Journal of Economics and Sociology, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 61(3), pages 657-680, July.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:ajecsc:v:61:y:2002:i:3:p:657-680
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    Cited by:

    1. Bezemer, Dirk & Dulleck, Uwe & Frijters, Paul, 2005. "Social Capital, Creative Destruction and Economic Development," Research Report 05C09, University of Groningen, Research Institute SOM (Systems, Organisations and Management).
    2. Seungjoo Lee & Changhui Kang, 2015. "Labor Market Effects of School Ties: Evidence from Graduates of Leveled High Schools in South Korea," Korean Economic Review, Korean Economic Association, vol. 31, pages 199-237.
    3. repec:dgr:rugsom:05c09 is not listed on IDEAS

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