Sunday, February 1, 2009

Putnam's Bowling Alone- MIS

"Social capital can thus be simultaneously a 'private good' and a 'public good.'  Some of the benefit from an investment in social capital goes to bystanders, while some of the benefit redounds to the immediate interest of the person making the investment."

I really enjoyed this quote because I felt as if it presented a side of social capital that many of us don't normally recognized.  Usually when thinking of social capital I only think of the direct effect it has on the person or persons who are actually doing the investment.  For example when you use a connection to another person to advance yourself in the workplace or to be hired for a new job.  This directly benefits the person that has the social connection.  This quote also presents a completely different view of social capital that is very important.  Not only does social capital affect the person or people that are directly involved but it also affects other bystanders.  An example of this is when a club decides to devote its time to clean up a neighborhood park.  Although the whole community did not help clean up the park, everyone that uses the park benefits.  There is a extra advantage for people that did not clean up the park.  I also believe that this quote shows one of the reasons why social capital is so important to a community.  It helps bring people together and benefits many even if they are not involved.  Social capital provides many opportunities for the people involved as well as others which is very important for communities to grow and thrive.

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