Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Legacy Department



Sridharan, Sri V

Committee Member

Gartner , William

Committee Member

LaForge , Lawrence

Committee Member

Moore , DeWayne


Recent OM literature conceptualizes social capital as being comprised of three inter-related dimensions: the relational dimension, the structural dimension, and the cognitive dimension. Existing research suggests that ocial capital offers firms the potential to leverage their interorganizational relationships to create sustainable advantage and superior performance opportunities for the firm.
However, despite the interest and attention of social capital theory among operations management (OM) and supply chain management (SCM) researchers, there is a surprising shortage of cohesive empirical research on social capital theory. The absence of reliable and valid empirical measures of social capital has limited OM researchers' ability to effectively evaluate the potential of this theoretical lens. Moreover, there is a pressing need for social capital be evaluated not as separate independent dimensions, but holistically with an emphasis on the true inter-relatedness of the three dimensions.
In this dissertation we add clarity to social capital and its implications on intellectual capital and firm performance.
Specifically, we develop and empirically test reliable and valid metrics for social capital; develop and empirically test a model of social capital comprising of three interrelated dimensions; and develop and empirically test the relationships between social capital, intellectual capital and performance outcomes for firms. We find that the three dimensions of social capital are, in fact, inter-related and that there are significant risks inherent in studying social capital as being comprised of independent dimensions. We show that firm size can have significant relationships with the structural dimension of social capital.
This dissertation serves to further establish social capital as a valuable lens for OM researchers.