Social capital generators? A case study of industry associations within the Vancouver new media cluster

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Thesis type
(Thesis) M.A.
Date created
This thesis uses a case study approach to explore the question: "How do civic associations affect social capital formation in an industrial cluster?" The Vancouver new meda industry is the site of thls research, which is based on over seventy interviews, statistical information from published sources, qualitative and quantitative surveys, and participant observation. The study concludes that civic associations play a crucial role in influencing the production, quality, and amount of social capital in an industry. Although associations encounter a number of challenges, most notably related to inter-organizational politics and lack of resources, their influence on the stock of social capital is positive for several reasons: most associations engage in activities that create desirable social capital for their members, they serve as a "safety net" for the industry helping make connections for firms and indklduals, they help define the cluster, and they faulitate internal and external communication in the industry.
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