A Social Perspective

Janine Nahapiet

in The Oxford Handbook of Human Capital

Published in print January 2011 | ISBN: 9780199532162
Published online May 2011 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks in Business and Management

 A Social Perspective

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  • Organizational Theory and Behaviour
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This article begins by suggesting that one must define human capital (HC) from a social perspective, the value of which inevitably depends on a wide range of social factors and relationships. The focus here is on the relationship between human (individual) capital and social capital, and their impact on each other's development. The article examines the concept of capital, drawing initially on the economics literature. It concludes that even though HC fails to meet the criteria for capital evident in that literature, its heuristic value has made it popular nonetheless. It also notes that HC's failure to meet the conceptual conditions of capital theory can be interpreted as a critical insertion of human values into the discussion. Leveraging from the Austrian economists, the article urges the analysis from static concepts and to a more dynamic interactive frame.

Keywords: human capital; social perspective; social capital; economics literature; Austrian economists

Article.  11234 words. 

Subjects: Business and Management ; Organizational Theory and Behaviour ; Research Methods

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