Social Capital of Rural Areas: Attempt at Reconstruction
Social capital, even being an ambiguous phenomenon with number of different definitions, is considered as a one of the important factors of local community’s development. The author believes that social capital is a kind of feature or resource of a local community that may contribute to the effective activity of both individual and collective social actors. Relying on the recent sociological research (Public Opinion Research Center, Social Diagnosis) the author attempts to assess the capacity of Polish rural areas in terms of social capital. In order to describe the condition of social capital, the indicators referring to trust, solidarity, membership in non-governmental organizations, information, communication, social integration, and subjectivity are used. The data reveals that the level of social capital in rural areas of Poland is low and no increase can be clearly observed. Instead there are reasons to doubt in the fast development of rural social capital in the near future.