Case Study 2: Building Young People’s Social Capital Through Networks of Interreligious Dialogue in Oslo

  • Øystein Lund Johannessen
  • Dag Husebø


This chapter focuses on the role of a younger generation of activists organising interreligious dialogue for youth from different faith and life-stance backgrounds in Oslo, Norway, and their social capital. The main research question regards the ‘double action’ at play between social capital in terms of networks, norms and sanctions as conditioned by and condition for these interreligious activities and relations. Empirical research was carried out throughout 2017 in a borough of mixed working class and middle class citizens, among them nearly 50% with immigrant background. Interviews and observations focused on dialogue activities between Christians in a Lutheran Church of Norway parish, Hindu youth in a nearby Hindu Cultural Centre and young Muslims from the area. The young Hindus described how their social capital had gradually changed from being largely micro-level oriented to also involving meso-level networks. The broadening of networks (bridging capital) and renewed engagement as active members of the Arena for Young Hindus (bonding capital) was largely due to initiatives and support from activists in the citywide organisation Young Dialogue. The research shows a strong commitment among the activists to bridging and linking life-stance communities in order to harmonise potential social tension and gaps in the city.


Interreligious dialogue Dialogue activists Interreligious networks Interreligious relationships Social capital Young Hindus 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Øystein Lund Johannessen
    • 1
  • Dag Husebø
    • 2
  1. 1.Centre for Intercultural CommunicationVID Specialized UniversityStavangerNorway
  2. 2.University of StavangerStavangerNorway

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