The aim of this dissertation is to identify and analyze workers' Social Capital (SC) in three industry clothing Enclaves located in Central-western Mexico. In doing so, we propose a purely relational approach to which SC is assumed as simultaneously composed from social links that an actor (Ego) has with others (Alters) being materialized in a social network, as well as from social resources embedded in such network, which are accessible through relationships, although in an unequal way, by the effect of both the actors' position in the social structure, and the particular configurations adopted by the network. At the core of this perspective, interactions and relations serve as an irreducible basis of SC, which is expressed under an indivisible duality of form and content: at the form pole there are relations creating and being manifested in forms such as the social network, which becomes the SC's formal structure. The other pole is related to relations' substantial contents that can be located in multiple fields such as the economic, symbolic, informative, as well as norms, trust, values, etc. This premise allows us to focus the SC's analysis, in both networks and the resources embedded inside them. Consequently, the dissertation describes and centers on two approaches of SC which having a common theoretical basis have been separately developed: the positional or resources approximation and the reticular one, specifically in its personal network variant. In order to study SC from the first approximation, a study is conducted through the Position Generator Method (PGM) having a sample of workers from Moroleón-Uriangato Metropolitan Area in the state of Guanajuato. For the second one, we lead a study through the Personal Network Analysis Method (PNAM) adding the locality of Villa Hidalgo, Jalisco and using a sample of Ego-centered networks (N=75) with a fixed number of 30 Alters which allows to make use of occupational and socio-demographic data from 2,250 additional people. Moreover, we developed and proposed a third analysis method called Positional-Reticular Method (PORM). As far as we know, this method is original due to it has not been previously addressed in literature, at least regarding to large sized networks or in contexts of highly productive specialization. This PORM allows us to overcome weaknesses while taking advantage of the two previous methods by adding to the MARP positional attributes of Egos and Alters. Furthermore, by adapting the PGM’s indicators of access to SC, this method leads to estimate separately the positional Bonding and Bridging SC. This would be a key result in our research. By testing out these theories and methods in atypical local contexts characterized with high occupational specialization and a supposedly attenuated social differentiation, the results obtained allow us to prove key hypothesis in our study such as the unequal distribution of SC, differentiated relational configurations in the occupational structure, inbreeding homophily and localization, but at the same time, they make possible to observe certain ``theoretical anomalies'' which alternatively evidence atypical relational configurations. By following two complementary and integrative analyses consisting of (i) a personal networks' typology identified through a cluster analysis and (ii) a clustered graphs’ representation of social stratification in the studied localities, obtained evidence leads to a questioning of diverse key assumptions widely disseminated in the study of SC, such as the role of homogeneity, cohesion, geographical concentration of personal contacts and, in general bonding (or cohesive ties) in obtaining a greater SC.
|Date of Award||29 Jan 2014|
|Supervisor||José Luis Molina (Director)|