Social capital

Social capital is the resource of social networks, community cohesion, social participation, trust and empowerment. The social capital index monitors aggregate changes in levels of social capital since 2013. The index is set to 100 in 2013. Find out more about this indicator.

The index trend has been stable and maintaining between 2013 and 2017. The change between 2017 and 2019 has been driven by the decrease in the social capital themes of ‘empowerment’ (feeling able to influence decisions) ‘networks’ (neighbourhood help and support), ‘participation’ (volunteering).

The Social Capital index is at 93 index points which is 7 points lower than the 2013 baseline (100) and the index score for 2018 (95). This change between 2018 and 2019 was statistically significant.

The social capital indicator is a composite index measure that depends on consistency of data collection. Since 2020 SHS data are not comparable with previous years, we are not able to provide an performance rating for 2020. Data from other sources collected during COVID suggests that the pandemic has resulted in worsened levels of many of the social capital themes, and particularly for certain groups and places within the population. This impact is the focus of separate research and analysis, and there are discussions ongoing about the most suitable way for social capital trends to be presented within the National Performance Framework.

The Scotland’s Wellbeing: The Impact of COVID-19 report brings together much of this information.

Performance Worsening

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