Exploring the dimensions of social capital that are effective mediators of long distance commuting impacts on wellbeing
Long distance commuting (LDC) impacts are difficult to generalize due to interactions between neighbouring communities. This paper explored resident perceptions and the nature of social capital in Kalgoorlie-Boulder to mediate LDC impacts. Group interview respondents reported a lack of linking social capital, they did not possess this type of social capital thus could not use it as a mediator between LDC impacts and wellbeing. There was a sense of helplessness based on a perceived inability to influence the scale of LDC (thus the size of the impact). Respondents were empathetic towards the local council (their linking social capital), however, participants perceived the council as powerless to influence the size of the LDC workforce in Kalgoorlie-Boulder. Respondents also identified structural limitations in LDC employment such as 12-h shifts, which impeded any attempt to build (bridging) social capital between residents and the LDC workforce.