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No Black Box and No Black Hole: from Social Capital to Gift Exchange

Listed author(s):
  • Dolfsma, W.A.
  • van der Eijk, A.R.
  • Jolink, A.

In this paper, we draw on the literature about gift exchange to suggest a conceptualization of the emergence, maintenance and use of social capital (SK). We thus open up the black box of how social relations are established, and are able to indicate what can be meaningfully ascribed to social capital. Social capital as a concept cannot be invoked at will to explain situations that are primarily perceived as favorable. Instead, when the way in which social capital emerges, maintained and used is conceptually clarified, it becomes clear that situations perceived as unfavorable can be ascribed to SK as well, and it becomes clear that SK cannot be drawn on at will, by just anybody. SK resides in what we call a social capital community.

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Paper provided by Erasmus Research Institute of Management (ERIM), ERIM is the joint research institute of the Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University and the Erasmus School of Economics (ESE) at Erasmus University Rotterdam in its series ERIM Report Series Research in Management with number ERS-2005-040-ORG.

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Date of creation: 09 Jun 2005
Handle: RePEc:ems:eureri:6665
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RSM Erasmus University & Erasmus School of Economics, PoBox 1738, 3000 DR Rotterdam

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Fax: 31-10-408 9020
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