Social Capital and Public Policy in Greece
Social capital has emerged as a key concept on the social sciences in general and political science/public policy in particular over the last two decades or so, because, by facilitating collective action among the actors, it leads to increased levels of performance in several public policy areas and public policy at large. In the case of Greece, the low level of social capital, at least since the late 1980s, tends to be regarded as a key problem of the domestic institutional infrastructure that crucially affects the level of performance in several public policy areas. In that respect, there is evidence to suggest that the low level of social capital is linked to the dominant role of rent-seeking behaviour of relatively small and strongly-tied interest groups in the policy process that inhibit policy learning and hence the reform process in several public policy areas. This paper presents evidence on the implications of the state of social capital in Greece for public policy-making from two policy areas, namely environmental and regional.
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