Measuring Social Capital in the Republic of Korea with Mixed Methods: Application of Factor Analysis and Fuzzy-Set Ideal Type Approach

Soondool Chung, Hyeji Choi, Sophia Seung yoon Lee

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5 Scopus citations

Abstract

Variation in the concept of social capital casts difficulties in measurements; moreover, measuring social capital requires different methods because concepts can differ by countries, regions and also according to the conceptual attributes included in the concept. Discussion on social capital has been gaining much attention in also East Asia, where Confucianism and family oriented values are suggested to be an important cultural background. This study aims to first critically review research on social capital not only in Korea, but also elsewhere, with a focus on measurements and indicators. By highlighting the importance of developing measurement that can reflect the cultural context of social capital, we compose survey questionnaires, which include multiple aspects of social capital and conduct an investigation on Korean social capital. Then, we exploit factor analysis with these questions. Next, with results from the factor analysis above, we employ the method of fuzzy set ideal type approach in order to measure social capital in Korea according to different demographic groups. The results suggest that people with low education and low income have difficulties participating in the society through interactions, even when their trust toward the society and their consciousness regarding the norm are similar to those of the other groups in Korea.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)45-64
Number of pages20
JournalSocial Indicators Research
Volume117
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - May 2014

Keywords

  • Factor analysis
  • Fuzzy-set ideal type approach
  • Mixed methods
  • Republic of Korea
  • Social capital

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