Talking up Social Capital: An Analysis of Social Voice

John Hudson

Research output: Working paper / PreprintWorking paper

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Social capital represents the potential networks open to an individual. But potential does not mean that it is exploited. Social voice is defined as the ability of an individual to make use of their social capital. We analyze a particular aspect of ‘social voice’, i.e. the ability to persuade others. Using a Bayesian framework we conclude that this should increase with education and the frequency with which the social network considers new ideas or issues. The impact of age is ambiguous. An individual’s knowledge should increase, but so too should the strength of prior beliefs within their social network. Empirical work based on Eurobarometer data confirms the importance of education and that social voice declines with age. It also finds evidence for a gender gap, which education only partially corrects, but marriage magnifies. Finally we confirm that social voice impacts on individual wellbeing.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationBath, U. K.
PublisherDepartment of Economics, University of Bath
Publication statusPublished - 2009

Publication series

NameBath Economics Research Working Papers


  • social capital
  • education marriage
  • gender


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