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Measuring Social Capital at the Individual Level: Personal Social Capital, Values and Psychological Distress.

Helen Berry (Research School of Social Sciences, Australian National University)
Debra Rickwood (Department of Applied Psychology, University of Canberra)

Journal of Public Mental Health

ISSN: 1746-5729

Article publication date: 1 March 2000

Abstract

It is proposed that social capital, a societal‐level construct, can be measured at the individual level. This ‘personal social capital’ is a psychological construct defined as a logically linked sequence of social behaviours: community participation, social support and trust in others. Individuals who have more personal social capital will participate in their communities more and have more social support, greater trust in others and less psychological distress than those with less. It was also predicted that social values would influence levels of personal social capital, indirectly influencing distress. Structural equations modelling revealed that, within the construct of personal social capital, the strongest predictor of distress was community trust. Harmony values also directly predicted distress, while security values had an indirect effect via reduced community participation, social support and community trust.

Citation

Berry, H. and Rickwood, D. (2000), "Measuring Social Capital at the Individual Level: Personal Social Capital, Values and Psychological Distress.", Journal of Public Mental Health, Vol. 2 No. 3, pp. 35-44. https://doi.org/10.1108/17465729200000020

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MCB UP Ltd

Copyright © 2000, MCB UP Limited