The Research Programme on Social Capital and Networks of Trust tied in closely with the concept of social capital that has rapidly emerged into the social science debate in Finland. Social capital is understood as referring to the values and norms prevailing in the community, to the networks that are based upon those values and to the social trust that evolves through those common values and networks. On the other hand, social capital has also been used to refer to the social and cultural capacity of individuals. The Academy of Finland considered this an extremely challenging research programme. It addressed current national information needs in an increasingly globalised information society and provided an excellent opportunity to apply different theoretical premises.
This research program was coordinated by Science Adviser Päivi Messo-Lindén, Research Council for Culture and Society, Academy of Finland.