Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



Document Type



During recent years, social capital has become one of the most widely used concepts in sociological literature, and its popularity has shown itself in both sociological theory and everyday language. Its increasing popularity has mainly resulted from its conceptualizations by some of the most prominent social scientists, such as Pierre Bourdieu, James Coleman, Nan Lin, and Robert Putnam and from its empirical applications to social problems and society afterwards. While many scholars have seen social capital as something of a cure for social problems and perceived social capital theories adequate as they are for their empirical applications, few scholars have approached social capital with a critical perspective and critically addressed the highly accepted social capital theories. I argue that the lack of critical perspective to the current social capital theories is a research gap. Therefore, to satisfy this research gap and to question the validity of these highly accepted social capital theories, this dissertation addresses the concept of social capital with an emphasis on its three dimensions: holism, convertibility, and conductibility. In three separate studies, this dissertation examines each dimension of the concept respectively with a critical approach, discusses what their main components are, presents who their most prominent thinkers are and what they have claimed, reveals their shortcomings, and finally offers plausible solutions to remove the shortcomings. Thus, this dissertation aims to provide an update to some of the highly accepted social capital theories and a unique contribution to the social capital literature.



Document Availability at the Time of Submission

Release the entire work immediately for access worldwide.

Committee Chair

Kamo, Yoshinori



Included in

Sociology Commons