Social Capital for Healthy Public Policy Formulation by a Community in Northeastern Thailand

By Chanaboon Intharaphan, Dusadee Ayuwat and Wongsa Laohasiriwong.

Published by The International Journal of Interdisciplinary Social and Community Studies

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This research aimed at investigating the use of social capital in the allocation of healthy public policy by the community in Northeastern Thailand. This qualitative research was employed to study a rural village in Ubon Ratchathani Province, which has excellent health system management. Thirty key informants from the selected village included one Village Headman, two elders, five villagers, three patients with chronic diseases, thirteen Village Health Volunteers, three Public Health officials, two Sub-district officials, and one Director of the Sub-district. This research used in-depth interviews, group interviews and non-participant observations to collect data and used content analysis and descriptive analysis to analyze and interpret them. The results showed that the community had used a deliberative approach for allocating public health policies. The community used different types of social capital for the allocation public policies including the following: 1) Bonding Social Capital: Creating Close Social Relationships - This enables the village health volunteers to obtain data about health conditions effectively and to disseminate news about public hearings regarding healthy public policies thoroughly. 2) Bridging Social Capital: Maintaining Good Relationships at a Social Unit Level - This form of capital is beneficial in accomplishing the work of the Village Health Volunteers in drafting healthy public policies and in recruiting resources needed for carrying out public hearings on health matters. 3) Linking Social Capital: Creating & Maintaining Good Relationships between the Village Health Volunteers and Other Organizations, which enables the Health Volunteers to obtain advice and suggestions from the experts of other villages to draft healthy public policies.

Keywords: Bonding Social Capital, Bridging Social Capital, Linking Social Capital, Community, Policy Formulation, Social and Community, Healthy Public Policy

The International Journal of Interdisciplinary Social and Community Studies, Volume 12, Issue 1, March 2017, pp.29-41. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 855.334KB).

Chanaboon Intharaphan

Lecturer, Faculty of Political Science, Ubon Ratchathani University, Ubon Ratchathani, Thailand

Dr. Dusadee Ayuwat

Associate Professor, Department of Sociology and Anthropology, Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, Khon Kaen University, Moung Khon Kaen, Khon Kaen, Thailand

Assoc Prof. Wongsa Laohasiriwong

Associate Professor, Department of Public Health Administration, Faculty of Public Health, Khon Kaen University, Khon Kaen, Khon Kaen, Thailand