Agricultural Economics Department


Date of this Version

December 2004


Published in Cornhusker Economics, 12/08/2004. Produced by the Cooperative Extension, Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources, Department of Agricultural Economics, University of Nebraska–Lincoln.


When you think of the word, capital, dollars or money probably comes to mind. What if I told you there were at least six kinds of capital within every community? Capital is more than just... capital. Cornelia and Jan Flora, in their recent book, Rural Communities: Legacy and Change (2003), identify several kinds of capital that are present in varying degrees in all communities. You might think of it as layers on an onion, with each layer relying on the next (Figure 1). These layers of capital are the building blocks or assets within communities. These common elements can be identified in all communities yet the unique mix of each capital is what makes a community special.