The State of Social Capital in Britain: Policy briefing

A new policy briefing provides a high level summary of findings and discussion from Understanding Society’s State of Social Capital in Britain event.

The purpose of the briefing is to look at the trends in social capital in the context of austerity, examine evidence on social outcomes and share thinking on what works in building active and resilient communities.

Key highlights of the briefing

  • A reflection on the battle between austerity and the Big Society initiative, including commentary on the economic value of volunteering.
  • An examination of the association between social capital and important public policy outcomes around health and wellbeing, young people’s development, tackling poverty, neighbourhood development, and culture and sports.
  • A look at measuring social capital by the Office for National Statistics and the use of Understanding Society’s quality data for research and analysis.
  • Recommendations for government, civil society organisations and academic researchers.

Raj Patel, author of the report and Acting Director of Understanding Society’s Policy Unit comments on why the state of social capital is such a big issue for policy makers and practitioners.

“The goal of building active and resilient communities is shared by many – from governments across the home nations and local authorities to charities and businesses active in the community. But with tremendous challenges being faced by individuals, families and communities and continued reduction in overall public spending, are we becoming weaker as a society when it comes to civic participation and support to others? This briefing sheds new light and raises important questions.”

Download the full briefing: The State of Social Capital in Britain.

All of the presentations from the event can also be downloaded

For more information regarding this report, please contact Raj Patel.

Related links

More social capital research that uses Understanding Society data