Recent empirical studies have clearly demonstrated the importance of offline social capital for disaster resilience and response. I’ve blogged about some of this analysis here and here. Social capital is typically described as those “features of social organizations, such as networks, norms, and trust, that facilitate action and cooperation for mutual benefit.” In other words, social capital increases a group’s capacity for collective action and thus self-organization, which is a key driver of disaster resilience. What if those social organizations were virtual and the networks digital? Would these online communities “generate digital social capital”? And would this digital social capital have any impact on offline social capital, collective action and resilience?
Phi Beta Iota: Transparency, truth, and trust blend together. Governments and corporations accustomed to getting their way through the abuse of secrecy and power are now confronted with social networks that are smarter, more agile, and impossible to repress. The Berlin Wall fell to People 1.0. Humanitarian Technologies today are People 2.0. Public hybrid governance will be People 4.0. Inevitably.