SOCIAL VALUES – Definitions, 4 Types, and Functions

Introduction to Social Values

In the fancy web of society, there exists an invisible thread that binds us together – social values. These values are like the unwritten rules that shape our behavior, guide our decisions, and ultimately define the effect of our culture. 

But what are social values, and why are they so important in our lives? Let’s enter on a journey to uncover the essence of social values, their types, functions, and their major impact on our lives.

What are Social Values?

Imagine social values as the compass that helps us navigate the sea of social interactions. They are the shared beliefs, principles, and norms that a group of people hold dear. These values serve as a benchmark for what is considered right or wrong, acceptable or unacceptable in a given society. 

For example, the value of honesty means telling the truth rather than lying, a principle many of us were taught from a young age. I know that now in this era it is not applicable in all sector but after all its a part of human being.

Definition of Social Values 

C.H. Persell  said that “Values are strongly held general ideas people share about what is good or bad, desirable or undesirable.”

According to R.K. Mukherjee, “Values are socially approved desires and goals that are internalized through the process of conditioning, learning or socialization and that become subjective preferences, standards, and aspirations.”

R.T. Schaefer said that “Values are the collective conception of what is considered good, desirable or proper or bad, understandable, and improper in a culture.”

Haralambos, “A value is a belief that something is good and desirable.”


Types of Social Values

Types of social values

Social values come in various forms, just like a treasure trove filled with diverse gems. There are moral values, which guide our individual conduct and ethical choices, such as respect for others or kindness.

Then, we have cultural values, which are deeply rooted in our heritage and customs, like celebrating cultural festivals or observing traditional ceremonies. Additionally, societal values reflect the broader norms upheld by a society, such as democracy, equality, and freedom.

But here are the most primary and common types of Social Values that is COSWED – Community Outreach for Sustainability, Wellbeing, and Diversity

  1. Community
  2. Sustainability
  3. Wellbeing
  4. Diversity

These are the Explanation

Community: Social value involves improving real lives and creating live communities. This can be achieved by addressing community needs, supporting healthcare facilities, offering skills training, and donating to community organizations.

Sustainability: Sustainability is a important aspect of social value, acknowledging the impact of businesses on the environment. Basically, It encourages businesses to adopt sustainable practices, as consumers are increasingly willing to support eco-friendly products and services.

Wellbeing: Wellbeing is central to social value, encompassing various dimensions like personal health, relationships, education, and more. So that, it aims to improve the overall quality of life for individuals and communities.

Diversity and Inclusion: Promoting diversity and inclusion within organizations is another important aspect of social value. Because of that it can lead to higher profits and is seen as a way to address societal inequalities.

Functions of Social Values

Social values aren’t just abstract concepts; they play vital roles in our lives:

  • Guidance: Social values provide us with a moral scope, helping us differentiate right from wrong.
  • Social unity: They give a growth to the  belonging and unity among people who share these values.
  • Identity: Values are a part of our identity, shaping our personality and worldview.
  • Conflict Resolution: When conflicts arise, shared values help in finding common ground and resolving disputes.

Importance of Social Values

Can you imagine a world which have no social values – it would be wild. These values are the pillars of a stable and harmonious society. They promote tolerance, empathy, and understanding, which are essential for peaceful harmony. 

  • Guiding our behavior: Values help us to know what is considerd rite and wrong, good and badder, desirable and undesirable. This helps us to make decisions and behave in a way that is consistent with our beliefings.
  • Promoting social cohesion: Values helps to creates a sense of common purpose and belonging. When we shares the same values, we is more likely to cooperate and works together for the commoner good.
  • Encouraging positive behaviors: Values can motivates us to acts in positiver ways, like bein’ honest, helpfuls, and kind-like. This can leads to a more juster and equitabler society.
  • Helping us to copes with challenges: Values can provides us with a sense of strengths and resilience in the face of challenges. When we believes in something’, it can gives us the courageous to face difficult situations.
  • Given our lives meanings: Values can helps us to finds meanings and purposes in our lives. When we lives by our values, we feels like we is making a differences in the world-like.

How Social Values Shape Our Behavior?

Consider the social value of environmental sustainability. If you were raised in a society that places high importance on protecting the environment, you’re more likely to recycle, reduce waste, and make eco-friendly choices. Our actions, in turn, influence the world around us, creating a ripple effect.

How Social Values Help Us to Function as a Society?

Picture a society where everyone has their own set of values, with no common ground. Chaos would ensue. Social values provide a framework for cooperation, ensuring that we can live together harmoniously. For example, the value of respect ensures that we treat each other with consideration, even if our beliefs differ.

How Social Values Can Be Changed?

Social values are not static; they evolve over time. They can change through education, media, and societal shifts. For instance, in recent years, there has been a growing emphasis on gender equality, leading to a shift in social values related to gender roles.

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