Sociology Index

HUMAN CAPITAL

Social Capital, Political Capital

Human Capital is the talents and capabilities that individuals contribute to the process of production. Human capital also refers to the sum total of skills and knowledge embodied in the ability to perform labor so as to produce economic value. Companies, governments and individuals can invest in this human ‘capital’ just as they can invest in technology and buildings or in finances. According to Smith, human capital is skills, dexterity and judgment. A country's ability to learn from the leader is a function of its stock of "human capital". Human capital can be acquired through formal schooling and on-the-job training. There is a complex relationship between the division of labor and human capital.

The human capital in an organization consists of the workers in an organization. There are a variety of measures by which human capital might be measured. Intertwined with the human capital would seem to be another kind of capital.

Becker's book entitled Human Capital, 1964, became a standard reference for many years. Human capital is similar to "physical means of production." One can invest in human capital and one's outputs depend on the rate of return on the human capital one owns.

"social capital" is an analogous term to "human capital" which was itself created by analogy to the term "physical capital." - Michael B. Spring.