Trust, Networks and Norms: The Creation of Social Capital in Agricultural Economies in Ghana
Posted: 20 Aug 2001
This paper contributes to the continuing debate over the multifaceted concept of trust, and its ability to provide a richer explanation of processes of economic activity. Using case studies of agricultural production, marketing and financing systems in Brong Ahafo Region of Ghana, the analysis documents the means by which trust is created among farmers, traders and agricultural input suppliers. The mechanisms include formal and informal networks of working relations, customer friendships, pre-existing networks and intermediaries. The study shows that trust is necessary for the development of a vibrant private sector based on microenterprises, in conditions where actors cannot rely on formal legal institutions at present.
Keywords: social capital, credit, markets, rural development, Africa, Ghana
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