The extent of family and school social capital promoting positive subjective well-being among children in Shenzhen, China

It is an undeniable fact that well-being of the new generation for the 21st century has experienced significant changes and the children are living in increasingly diverse society nowadays. More specifically, Chinese families put more emphasis on market-oriented development and free competition in transitional China. Given China's one-child policy, parents try their best to let their children attend learning and social activities so as to be well-equipped for children's future development. The opportunity cost of the competition oriented programs is that children have less time to play together and learn appropriate social skills that will accurate social capital but it takes time and effort to accumulate. Previous studies highlighted variation of social capital accrued among child and adolescents in China by their socioeconomic background, household registration status (i.e. hukou status), and gender; and its impacts on their future development. However, there is little knowledge of social capital building among primary children with different socioeconomic and demographic characteristics in transitional China. This paper uses the concept of social capital to frame the analysis of (i) the extent to which variations in family and school social capital can be explained by child's differing socioeconomic and demographic background and school characteristics; and (ii) the extent to which family and school social capital in combination may be associated with variations in child subjective well-being in Shenzhen, where stands in the forefront of economic development in Guangdong province, China and its experiences learnt may inform the rest of the country. Survey data with a random sample of 1,306 sixth grade primary school children and their parents was collected from the Nanshan district in Shenzhen. The results suggested that gender, the only-child status at home and hukou status had impacts on family and school social capital accrued among primary school children in Shenzhen. There were also links between child's perception of connectedness to their parents, peers, and teachers, and their positive child subjective well-being.