Customer Review

8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Hodgepodge of conflicting positions, March 20, 2003
This review is from: Knowledge and Social Capital (Knowledge Reader) (Hardcover)
I read articles on this book for those are assigned in a graduate class. But far from the title implies, The class has no relationship with knowledge economy which is the buzzword in the business community. But this book was used to make us to be familiar with the concept of ¡®social capital.¡¯ Indeed this book tells less about knowledge but much more about social capital. Part I of this book contains introductory articles on the conception of the social capital and Part II lists real world application of the concept. 5 Articles of Part I voices cacophony, however. Reading through the articles only gives confusion to us. Nonetheless, it¡¯s inevitable and intentional for there is no consensus about the very basic conception. So editor deliberately put those conflicting perspectives in one volume. In turn, this way of editing reveals the fact that this book is not suitable to beginners. If you are already known to the word, social capital, reading through competing perspective doesn¡¯t baffle your nerves. But if you haven¡¯t heard the word at all, this book should not be recommended. Overall, the quality of articles is good enough. Indeed those are well-known ones. But if you want to see what the word, social capital at all, this is not your choice. If so, I recommend Nan Lin¡¯s ¡®Social Capital: A Theory of Social Structure and Action¡¯. This book does not only overview the various conflicting positions comprehensively, but also systematically define the concept from the network approach. In fact, Nan Lin is a eminent figure in the social network theory.
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