Social Capital and Community Cohesion: The Constitution of Community Social Capital in Malaysia

Ahmad Shukri Abdul Hamid, Najib Ahmad Marzuki, Noor Azizah Ahmad, Mohd. Sobhi Ishak

Abstract


This paper discusses what constitutes community social capital and how community cohesion is achieved. The insights explicated in this paper came from a study on community social capital in Malaysia. The study utilized a combination of focus group discussions and a survey method of a total of 293 respondents covering six (6) communities from six (6) districts in the state of Kedah, Malaysia. The study had produced a community social capital measuring instrument comprising a total of 36 items covering six (6) different dimensions. The study reveals that within the conceptual corpus of social capital, there are several “social dimensions” that can be construed as the socio-psychological contexts where people within a community may converge and develop a sense of togetherness. Social cohesion is the outcome of the interaction that occur within these realms. This correspond to an age-old sociological wisdom about society being the product of social interaction.

Keywords: Social Capital, Community, Malaysian Society

JEL Classifications: Z13


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