What are the Five Functions of Social Institutions?

Thu, 09/25/2014 - 00:53 -- Umar Farooq

An institution is specifically established for fixed social needs. If it fulfils these needs there is social Solidarity and cohesion among the people. If it fails to meet prescribed objectives there is dysfunctioning of the institution and state of unrest will emerge among the people. Generally, the following are the functions of social institution in societies of the world.


The institutions reproduce human race, goods, services, traditions and all other patterns of social life. Human race is reproduced in family. Material goods and services are produced and distributed by economic institutions. Power and authority and status and role are produced and enforced by the political institutions. The religious institutions’ products are rituals, values, beliefs and ceremonies. Educational institutions provide different techniques and ways of living for the people.


All the institutions preserve social norms by transmitting them to the people participating in them. The process of socialization starts from birth and continues up to the end of life. Man is always in learning process. The learning of the ways of life in social groups is called' socialization. Or the inducting of man into social life is. Socialization. This process goes on through the institutions because man lives in them. He learns norms of social life only in the institutions. Family teaches the elementary norms called folkways. The neighborhood teaches mores and educational institutions guide in legal courses of social life. The bazars and markets guide us in economic dealing. The religious institutions help us in the normative social life of a religion.

Sense of Purpose

Every institution is established for the fulfillment of a special purpose. Harvard University provide quality education. Hamdard Dawakhana prepares unani medicines only. Pak-Arab Fertilizer Factory, Multan provides fertilizer to the peasants. Hospitals provide heath facility to the community. Similarly, religious institutions impart religious education to the students. It means social institutions fulfill fixed needs of the people and continue their respective aims.

Preservation of Social Order

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