By Valeriano Sanchez-Famoso, Amaia Maseda, Txomin Iturralde, Sharon M. Danes & Gloria Aparicio

Originally published online: 13 Nov 2019


This study’s purpose was to synthesize the structure and content of the internal social capital (ISC) literature within business management refereed journals from 1989 to 2017 and to propose future directions for study. Performance indicators, bibliographic coupling, and content analysis were used to conduct the literature review. One hundred twenty-eight documents were organized in eight conceptual theme clusters addressing ISC’s definition, structure and behavioral dynamics, function of bonding, capacity building, and culture setting. The review also addressed performance enhancements and constraints that emanate out of ISC processes. In addition, it addressed the unique contextual ISC relevance of the family influence in family businesses. Gaps in the literature are discussed and a series of future research directions are posed for each of the eight thematic clusters that evolved from the literature review analysis.


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