Following social capital: its formation, mobilization and maintenance in Vietnamese housing upgrading projects : A thesis submitted in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy at Lincoln University

Social capital theory has been adopted in urban governance studies to promote democracy and inclusion through processes of communities’ active citizenship and political participation. The meaning and approach of defining social capital in relation to urban governance issues still remain ambiguous. Social capital’s theoretical application seems to remain elastic. This thesis set out with a general objective to critically examine how social capital operates in a local collective and community-based process. Specifically, the study utilizes the categorization of social capital dimensions as bonding, bridging and linking relations to explore how these social relation dimensions were formed, mobilized and maintained in a community-based housing upgrading process. To achieve its objectives, the study employs two qualitative case studies of community-based housing upgrading projects of the Asian Coalition of Community Action Programme in Vietnam: the Friendship housing project in Vinh city and Binh Dong 1 housing project in Tan An city. The research therefore seeks to both confirm the applicability of such social capital concepts in the Vietnam context and explore particularly aspects of the formation, mobilisation and maintenance of these types of social capital in these projects. The study findings suggest a framework that allows a synesthetic understanding of the operation of social capital regarding its components (trust, cooperation, other behavioural norms), levels (individuals, communities, network, state), formation approach (civil society or state-centred) and the interrelation of social capital dimensions (bonding, bridging and linking). Such a social capital operation framework necessitates multi-levels of societal resources in the formation of social capital. In addition, it accentuates the internal and contextual operation of key social capital components (i.e., trust, cooperation, attitudinal behaviours). Insights into a mixed approach of social capital formation are provided; they move beyond the dichotomy of civil-society and the state. The study draws attention to the interrelationship among bonding, bridging and linking capitals, raising a question regarding the hybrid nature of social capital dimensions. In addition, the study emphasizes that the mobilization of bonding, bridging and linking capital is interdependent and adaptable, and that the maintenance of social capital is unpredictable because conditions enabling social capital to form, or generate, are uncertain, being both conditional and unstable. Overall, the study concludes on a holistic approach to the formation, mobilization and maintenance of social capital within and between bonded, bridged and linked groups of such projects within the Vietnamese context and perhaps elsewhere.
Source DOI
Creative Commons Rights
Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International
Access Rights