University of Hertfordshire


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Original languageEnglish
Number of pages20
Pages (from-to)646-665
Journal publication date1 Jun 2017
Early online date11 Nov 2015
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2017


By using the classic works of Durkheim as a theoretical platform, this research explores the relationship between legal systems and social solidarity. We found that certain types of civil law system, most notably those of Scandinavia, are associated with higher levels of social capital and better welfare state provision. However, we found the relationship between legal system and societal outcomes is considerably more complex than suggested by currently fashionable economistic legal origin approaches, and more in line with the later writings of Durkheim, and, indeed, the literature on comparative capitalisms. Relative communitarianism was strongly affected by relative development, reflecting the complex relationship between institutions, state capabilities and informal social ties and networks.


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