Social capital or analytical liability? Social networks and African informal economies

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Oxford, UK: Blackwell Publishing

The article argues that observing African informal economies networks under a 'social capitalist' paradigm have prevented us from understanding the multidimensional characteristics of African informal economies. Advantages of networks on the African informal economies go beyond the binary social capitalistic concept of bonds and bridges. African networks in this context include both the past with its legacies and the present with its changes. African networks are based on ethnicity, religion, class, and gender. Solidarity cooperation improves economic efficiency by reducing the costs of economic organizations such as credit, labour, training, and referrals. Both weak and strong ties play a crucial role providing social support.

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Gender, Religion, Ethnicity/race, Social capital, Africa, Informal economies, Networks, Solidarity cooperation, Class
Global Networks 5(3): 217-238