Denmark exemplifies the puzzle of socio-economic success in Scandinavia. Populations are thriving despite the world’s highest levels of tax, generous social benefits and scarce natural resources. It would appear to be a land of paradise for free-riders and those who want ‘money for nothing’. However, the national personality is characterized both by cooperation in everyday life and the numerous ‘hard-riders’ who make extraordinary contributions. Applying Bourdieuconomics, the authors focus on contemporary case studies to explain how social capital and trust are used to counteract free-riding and enable the flight of the Scandinavian welfare state ‘bumblebee’.
Insightful and interdisciplinary, the authors’ approach offers qualitative case studies which explore trust, social capital and wealth in the Scandinavian welfare state. Key to the topic is the authors’ discussion of free-riders versus ‘hard-riders’ as well as civic engagement in the welfare state. The application of Bourdieuconomics, a new theoretical approach, to a range of examples using economics, sociology, anthropology and history, will make this highly cross-disciplinary book accessible to a broad group of readers.
This unique work will be of great value to researchers, students, policy makers and all of those who are interested in the fundamental question of how economies work, specifically how people build, exchange and convert tangible as well as intangible forms of capital.