Social Capital and Social Networks of Hidden Drug Abuse in Hong Kong

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

3 Scopus Citations
View graph of relations


Original languageEnglish
Article number6231
Number of pages15
Journal / PublicationInternational Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Issue number17
Online published27 Aug 2020
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2020



Owing to the increasing prevalence of hidden drug abuse in Hong Kong, yet scarce relevant current local research, this study seeks to carry out an in-depth investigation into the experience of hidden drug abusers, paying particular attention to their relevance to social capital and social networks. Seventy-three abusers attending drug treatment programs were interviewed, and a thematic analysis was performed. The results indicate hidden drug abuse is popular in Hong Kong. Apart from the decline of public, large-scale discos and the change of the types of drugs abused to date, one important contributing factor is the drug supply and transaction networks, which are extensive and multilocused, but secretive, with high closure levels. This kind of network is supported by bonding, bridging, and linking social capital as well as by providing convenient supply modes and offering drug abusers psychological comfort and safety. These factors encourage the hidden drug abuse to prevail and allow drug abusers to remain unidentifiable.

Research Area(s)

  • Drug trends, Hidden drug abuse, Hong Kong, Social capital, Social networks

Download Statistics

No data available