Social connections and lifelong learning

John Field

in Social capital and lifelong learning

Published by Policy Press

Published in print June 2005 | ISBN: 9781861346551
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9781447303374 | DOI:
Social connections and lifelong learning

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This chapter examines the idea of both social capital and lifelong learning, and evaluates the relationship between them. It does so in the context of the notion of the learning society, along with such related ideas as the learning region, the learning city, and the learning organization. The chapter notes that what all these ideas have in common is the belief that the architecture of people's relationships with one another, and the quality of the learning they undertake, are fundamentally linked, and that the two can be harnessed to one another in a mutually beneficial manner. It provides an account of current debates over the social contexts of adult learning. Next, the chapter elaborates the concept of social capital, which has developed rapidly across the social sciences. It then analyses the ways in which social capital and adult learning might be related to one another. The chapter concludes by outlining a hypothetical taxonomy of possible relationships.

Keywords: social capital; lifelong learning; learning society; learning region; learning city; learning organization; adult learning

Chapter.  11415 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Economic Sociology

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