SUSTAINABILITY OF AUSTRALIAN HORTICULTURAL PRODUCER COMMUNITIES: A SOCIAL CAPITAL CONCEPTUAL FRAMEWORK
Australia has a vibrant rural farming community and has supplied agricultural products of world-class standards to both local and international markets. A range of factors including drought, globalisation of markets and farming, and population movements have posed profound challenges to farming communities in Australia. While not unique to rural farming communities, in this context, related issues such as isolation, depression, and suicide are further straining the fabric of such communities. To engage with these issues, this paper proposes an analytic and conceptual framework to uncover the transformations and possible mutation in social capital in farming communities. Existing research shows that social capital is a critical feature of healthy and sustainable communities, providing a means through which people connect with each other, and build both individual and cooperative relationships. The conceptual framework proposed in this paper extends such work by considering, first, the emerging importance of virtual social capital in the upkeep of rural communities by substituting for traditional in-person social capital, and, second, how social capital may change over time.
Veerapa, N.K. and Marjoribanks, T. (2015). SUSTAINABILITY OF AUSTRALIAN HORTICULTURAL PRODUCER COMMUNITIES: A SOCIAL CAPITAL CONCEPTUAL FRAMEWORK. Acta Hortic. 1088, 637-642
social capital, social media, food security, globalisation