What is Social Change?

Types, Causes and Effects of Social Change

Definition of Social Change

"Modern society is inherently change-oriented."

Any alteration or modification that occurs in a situation over time is called social change. It is the change in human interactions and inter-relations. Some sources are greatly responsible for the change if it comes to change. The first source is unsystematic and unique factors day or night, climate, the existence of people or groups. The second source is systematic factors like if we need sound development, there must be a stable and flexible government and the system as well as different social organizations.

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According to Gould and W. L. Kolle- "Social Change denotes observed differences from antecedent states of the social structure, institution, habit or equipment of a society."

M. Ginsberg- "a change in social structure, e.g. in the size of a society the composition or balance of its parts, or the type of organization."

Mojumder defined it as a mode of fashion either modified or replacing previous ones in the life of individuals or in society.

Horton and Hunt defined it as a change in society's overall societal structure and relationship.

According to World Bank- "Social Change is the significant alteration of social structures ( that is of patterns as social action and interaction) including consequences and manifestations of such structures embodied inners (rules of conduct), values and cultural products and symbols.


Types of Social Change

Types of social change are the following:
  1. Complete change: when there is a total change, it is called a complete change. It is in status and practices
  2. Partial change:  when the part of a system changes, it is a partial change. It is either in status or practice
  3. Revolutionary Change: it is a sudden change and is always visible for a short period
  4. Evolutionary Change: it is slow to change, and it exists permanently

Read Also: Social Problem: Types, Causes and Solutions

Causes and Effects of Social Change

Causes of Social Change
Effects of Social Change
Natural and Geographical 
More Complexity
Political and Cultural
Professional diversity
Acute Competitiveness
Logical Society
Moral Degradation
Outstanding individuals
Improved Culture
Satellite Culture
Use of Modern Science and Tech.
Criminal Activity
Urbanization and Globalization
Global Interaction
Modernization etc
Identity of Status etc.
Social Disorganization etc. 


Why is Social Change Important?

It is regarded as crucial for the following reasons:

1. Social change may result in gender equality: Gender inequality has existed in every community for many years and is accepted as a fact of life. There is an urgent need for positive change. People have recognized the significance of social change and how it can lead to gender equality. That is why individuals and institutions have banded together to take actions such as increasing access to education for children and women, closing the gender pay gap, and providing women with healthcare that will result in positive and long-term social change.

2. Racial equality may result from social change: Most societies around the world have faced the issue of racial inequality in their community at some point. It could be an individual who is subjected to discrimination at work, or it could be a group, such as the LGBTQ community, which has been subjected to snide remarks on a daily basis for many years. Awareness, education, and legislative measures are all important tools for bringing about social change. Social movements such as the LGBTQ+ rights movement in the United States, the Reformation in Europe, and the Civil Rights movement in the United States are prime examples of how social change can change people's perceptions of races and lead to racial equality.

3. Social change will result in better worker rights: Labor and employees have been exploited since time immemorial. Human greed is a major motivator for the working class to fight for themselves. Social change is critical because it can improve the rights of every worker. The concept of social change in society and its structure is what has given rise to child labour laws, minimum wage laws, the formation of unions, the provision of medical care, legal protections, and higher wages.


4. Social change may lead to environmental well-being: Humans are the primary cause of environmental degradation and damage to land, air, and water. This is a cycle in which the damage has ultimately been detrimental to humans, the community, and the society in which we live. The significance of social change is that people are becoming more aware of their mistakes and taking action to support earth-friendly movements such as the Green Revolution and the protection of endangered species. Spreading awareness and encouraging responsibility and ownership will result in long-term environmental well-being.

5. Social change will be beneficial to business: In the workplace, a diverse group of people is now working together. The significance of social change is that these employees can now work together in favourable conditions regardless of caste, religion, race, creed, and so on. Furthermore, societal changes have aided in the creation of legal protections for employees and the elimination of the gender pay gap in the workplace. Overall, social changes have proven to be an important factor in maintaining the viability of business operations.

6. Social changes will empower citizens: Social changes address the underlying cause of the problem, attempting to eliminate long-term inefficiencies and inequality in society. It encourages people to take a stand against things they believe are wrong and work with others to remove them from society. Social change is important because it can empower citizens to improve the lives of future generations.


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