Journal of Social Sciences

How Guanxi Relates to Social Capital? A Psychological Perspective

Kai-Ping Huang and Karen Yuan Wang

DOI : 10.3844/jssp.2011.120.126

Journal of Social Sciences

Volume 7, Issue 2

Pages 120-126


Problem statement: The study aims to offer a discussion on social capital and guanxi, in order to illustrate the similarities and differences between these two concepts and how Chinese guanxi varies from Western preconceptions concerning social networking. Approach: The literature review and arguments were conducted to provide a systematic discussion of the guanxi and social capital relationship. Results: Both guanxi and social capital involve social relations; it is important to appreciate that guanxi does not relate exclusively to social capital, or that guanxi itself is simply another term for social capital. Conclusion: Both guanxi and social capital are similar concepts. Social capital is considered as both the attributes of individuals and organizations; thus, guanxi is distinctively about interpersonal relationships, which are often lost within the corporate environments of large organizations.


© 2011 Kai-Ping Huang and Karen Yuan Wang. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.