Investigation about the Relationship between Social Trust and Entrepreneurial Spirit of Rural Women: Case of Shirvan Village in Borojerd County

Document Type : Research Paper


1 Assistant professor, Department of Rural Development Studies, Faculty of Social Sciences, University of Tehran, Tehran , Iran

2 Master of Social Develoment-Rural studies, Faculty of Scoail Sciences, University of Tehran, Tehran, Iran


Entrepreneurship is one of the main elements of growth and development. It has attracted more attention due to employment, increasing profit and capital, transforming values, filling workforce market gaps, providing necessary factors for manufacturing goods, service delivery and marketing, offsetting economic failure, meeting social welfare, and participation of all the people in the society. In the context of rural development, entrepreneurship is one of the influential factors for rural development, because by creating new opportunities of and income it can play an effective role in improving economic situation of rural areas (Rezvani and Najarzadeh, 2008; 163). The importance of entrepreneurship activity in rural development is originated from this fact that entrepreneur can identify current opportunities and problems to imitate new solutions for growth and development. Hence, entrepreneural activity has a significant role in rural development through employment, improving quality of life, fair distribution of income, and optimized utilization of resources. Rural women are faced with cultural, economic, and social obstacles to do entrepreneurial activities. This may be originated from unawareness and lack of required trainings. From social perspective, entrepreneurship includes social relationships and leads to growth of talents (Paseban, 2004; 281). Based on the existant literature, social trust is one of the main components of social capital.It has three dimensions including individual trust, institutional trust, and public trust.  In addition, a review of previous studies showed that risk-taking and creativity are the two most important factos of entrepreneurship among people. We adopt these dimensions to provide a strong theoretical framework for our research. According to the discussion, the purpose of this study is to investigate the relationship between social trust (as a component of social capital) and entrepreneurial spirit of rural women. It should be noted that to our knowledge, there are little studies that investigated the relationships of social trust and entrepreneurship components in the context of rural women.
Population is women resided in Shirvan village in the rural areas of Borojerd City, Lorestan, Iran. Up to118 entrepreneur women have been selected as sample by a convenience-sampling plan. Questionnaire was self-administrated one that its reliability was confirmed by Cronbach’s alpha and its validity was supported by the comments of two experts using face validity. Cronbach’s alpha values for individual social trust, public social trust, institutional social trust, risk-taking and creativity are 0.714, 0.733, 0.753, 0.699, and 0.713, respectively. This confirms instrument reliability. To analyze data, Kendal correlation has been employed.
The results of descriptive statistics are as following: Of 118 respondents, the majority of them (31.5 percent) were in the range of 36 to 41 years old and 31 to 35 years old (22.03 percent). In addition, 84.74 percent of respondents were married. Finally, in terms of education level, the majority of women (82.2 percent) were in primary education level or below.
The results of our study revealed several important findings that are as following:
a) Individual social trust was positively associated with risk-taking of rural women.
b) Public social trust was positively associated with risk-taking of rural women.
c) Institutional social trust was positively associated with risk-taking of rural women.
d) Individual social trust was positively associated with creativity of rural women.
e) Public social trust was positively associated with creativity of rural women.
f) Institutional social trust was positively associated with creativity of rural women.
Social capital with its multiple dimensions including social trust is a main factor in improving rural society. Presence of these dimensions among various groups of rural women leads to interactions in both intergroup and intragroup level among them.As a result, it fosters potential talents to create entrepreneurial spirit. People having public trust contribute in affairs that are consistent with their attitudes. Trust with its multiple dimensions is a result of positive thinking of an individual in order to collaborate with other people; this is true for rural women because they move to similar sexual groups and similar mental situations and consequently it may lead to risk-taking among them. The entrepreneur attending individual trust and his/her own capital, addition to his/her relationships with informal resources such as friends, family, and etc., is faced with less structural and law obstacles to perform a business and to introduce an innovation and creativity. This will increase creativity spirit and risk-taking about investment. Institutional trust refers to positive attitude towards formal institutions to create a business. Institutional trust leads to formal relationships between women and developmental institutions and as a result, encourages human capital in terms of creativity and risk-taking.