Actor Definition and Meaning

The concept of actor, whose etymological root is in the Latin language, refers to who plays a character or assumes a certain role. Social, on the other hand, is that linked to society (a community of people who live in a territory and share a culture).

The notion of social actor is used to name the subject, the group of individuals or the entity that assumes the representation of certain interests and that works in order to achieve certain objectives. To reach the goal, the different social actors must interact with each other.

Social actors are active subjects that influence various economic, cultural or political processes of the community in which they intervene. Their actions have meaning and carry values.

Specifically, we can determine that the political authorities, religious leaders, official representatives of different organizations can be considered social actors… Of course, employers, workers’ representatives, who they are in charge of non-governmental organizations…

It is often said that a social actor assumes a social role: a certain pattern of behavior that the community imposes on it in a certain context. Take the case of teachers. These are social actors whose role is to educate. Beyond the individual identity of each teacher, teachers, as social actors, represent the role that society assigns them (they must spread positive values, have exemplary behaviors, protect children, etc.).

Mothers can also be considered social agents. Specifically, they are attributed to have to be, in relation to their children and society in general, as follows:
-They must instill values ​​such as love.
-They have to be women who are willing to go out of their way for their little ones and who do not hesitate to take care of them, feed them, educate them, protect them…

In the field of history, it is always established that social actors have played, play and will play an essential role in its development and progress. And they can range from provoking a revolt to starting a strike, initiating a change in society, claiming certain aspects…

It is important to establish, in addition to all the aforementioned, that it is necessary that in order to determine the existence or not of social actors it is necessary to rely on a series of aspects. Specifically, to indicate whether they are, the following criteria must be set:
-The function they perform.
-The representativeness they have.
-Your field of intervention.
-The power they hold.
-The objectives they seek to achieve.
-The results that allow to obtain.
-The resources they have.
-The actions that are in charge of carrying out.

Sometimes social actors are more abstract entities or concepts. It can be said, in this sense, that engineering constitutes itself as a social actor in the field of environmental protection. Those professionals and companies that work in the field of engineering can influence, for or against, ecological care as they carry out their activities.


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