IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

Social capital and poverty reduction: empirical evidence from Senegal


  • Barassou Diawara

    () (Knowledge and Learning Department, African Capacity Building Foundation, Harare, Zimbabwe)

  • Saeki Chikayoshi

    (Faculty of Economics, Kyushu University, Fukuoka, Japan)

  • Kobena Hanson

    (African Capacity Building Foundation, Harare, Zimbabwe)


Social capital has been described as an empirically elusive concept, yet has also been heralded as the glue that holds communities together. The objective of this paper is to show that associational relationships, social norms and cohesion are important in partly explaining the poverty status of the household heads in Senegal. We make use of the 2005 Senegalese Household Survey to construct an index of social capital and show that it is correlated with the economic situation of the households. The instrumental variables estimations suggest that social capital has an impact on poverty. Besides, after disaggregating our sample based on the gender and location of the household head, our results still show the evidence that household heads with more social capital are less likely to be poor. The findings of this study support recent emphasis by international community and specialists of development economics on investing in social capital. Senegal being representative of other sub-Saharan African countries (capital social is traditionally and culturally important in Sub-Saharan Africa), governments in the continent need to take into account social capital in the formulation of public policies. Besides, encouraging the creation of and sustaining the existing social capital might be of great importance for poverty reduction purposes in sub-Saharan Africa.

Suggested Citation

  • Barassou Diawara & Saeki Chikayoshi & Kobena Hanson, 2013. "Social capital and poverty reduction: empirical evidence from Senegal," Review of Applied Socio-Economic Research, Pro Global Science Association, vol. 6(2), pages 41-74, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:rse:wpaper:v:6:y:2013:i:2:p:41-74

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Henry, TULKENS & Parkash, CHANDER, 2006. "Cooperation, stability and self-enforcement in interational environmental agreements : a conceptual discussion," Discussion Papers (ECON - Département des Sciences Economiques) 2006003, Université catholique de Louvain, Département des Sciences Economiques, revised 15 Jan 2006.
    2. Pindyck, Robert S., 2012. "Uncertain outcomes and climate change policy," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 63(3), pages 289-303.
    3. Melissa Dell & Benjamin F. Jones & Benjamin A. Olken, 2009. "Temperature and Income: Reconciling New Cross-Sectional and Panel Estimates," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 99(2), pages 198-204, May.
    4. Peter Wood, 2010. "Climate Change and Game Theory," Environmental Economics Research Hub Research Reports 1062, Environmental Economics Research Hub, Crawford School of Public Policy, The Australian National University.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item


    social capital; poverty; probit; instrumental variables; Senegal;

    JEL classification:

    • I30 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - General
    • O10 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - General
    • R20 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Household Analysis - - - General


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:rse:wpaper:v:6:y:2013:i:2:p:41-74. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Manuela Epure). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.