Summary Background


Community Capitals Framework

Capital is “any type of resource capable of producing additional resources…When those resources or assets are invested to create new resources, they become capital” (Flora and Flora, 2008 – Community Capitals Framework). The seven types of community capitals are:

Human Capital

Refers to the skills and abilities of people, as well as the ability to access outside resources and bodies of knowledge to increase our understanding and identify promising practices. Human capital includes population, education, skills, health, creativity, youth, and diverse groups.

Natural Capital

Refers to assets that are available in a location, including resources, amenities, and natural beauty. This capital may include air quality, land, water (quality and quantity), scenery, and other natural resources.

Cultural Capital

Reflects the way people “know the world” and how to act within it. This capital includes the dynamics of who we know and feel comfortable with, what heritages are valued, collaboration across races, ethnicities, and generations, and a strong work ethic.

Social Capital

Reflects the connections between people and organizations or the social glue that makes things happen. This capital includes things like trust, norms, network structures, cooperation, common vision and goals, leadership, and diverse representation.

Political Capital

Reflects access to local, county, state, or federal government officials or leverage with a regional company. This capital includes things such as level of community organization through the use of government; ability of government to garner resources for the community.

Financial Capital

Refers to the financial resources available to invest in community capacity building, to underwrite business development, to support civic and social entrepreneurship, and to accumulate wealth for future community economic development.

Built Capital

Refers to infrastructure that supports a community. This includes telecommunications, industrial parks, main streets, water and sewer systems, health systems, and roads.