Drawing on primary research within voluntary sports clubs in the UK and secondary analysis of the wider international literature on social capital, this text focuses on the micro-processes of social capital development and how they play out in specific social settings. In so doing, it adds to existing research by developing a rich, contextualised, process-based view of social capital in action.
Critically reviewing theoretical and empirical literature on social capital, the book highlights the key current debates. The empirical core of the book draws on ethnographic observation over 18 months at voluntary sports clubs in the UK, including in-depth interviews with sports club members and organisers. The text explicitly seeks to set this empirical work in its wider context, by considering the findings in relation to other international studies of social capital in both sports clubs and other types of organisation. The book draws on international research from a whole range of countries: UK, USA, Australia, Canada, Norway, Denmark, Netherlands, Japan, Vanuatu, Czech Republic, Germany, and many others. The book establishes a transferable, process-based understanding of how social capital develops – both within sports clubs and beyond.
This is an illuminating reading for policymakers, practitioners, and researchers with an interest in the sociology of sport, sport development, sport management, sport policy, social theory, social policy, or social networks.
Table of Contents
1. Social capital and sport organisations: An introduction 2. Social capital and sport: A 20-year overview 3. Social capital: A mechanism-based conceptualisation 4. The case studies: An introduction 5. Forming and maintaining social ties in voluntary sports clubs 6. The core social capital mechanisms in voluntary sports clubs 7. The outcomes of social capital in voluntary sports clubs 8. How context shapes social capital in voluntary sports clubs: Personal context and club culture 9. How context shapes social capital in voluntary sports clubs: Key elements of club context 10. Social capital in voluntary sports clubs: International evidence 11. Beyond voluntary sports clubs: Social capital in the wider sport management, policy and sociology literature 12. Social capital and sport organisations: Implications and recommendations for practitioners and policymakers 13. Social capital and sport organisations: A conclusion Appendix: Details of the case study research
Richard Tacon is Senior Lecturer in Management at Birkbeck, University of London, UK. His research interests are in sport governance and the social impact of sport.