Neighborhood social capital and individual health

Sigrid M Mohnen, Peter P Groenewegen, Beate Völker, Henk Flap
Social Science & Medicine 2011, 72 (5): 660-7
Neighborhood social capital is increasingly considered to be an important determinant of an individual's health. Using data from the Netherlands we investigate the influence of neighborhood social capital on an individual's self-reported health, while accounting for other conditions of health on both the level of the neighborhood and the individual. We use national representative data ('The Housing and Living Survey', 2006) on the Netherlands with 61,235 respondents in 3273 neighborhoods. The cross-sectional data were combined with information provided by Statistics Netherlands on neighborhoods, i.e., the percentage of residents in the highest income quintile per neighborhood and the municipality's degree of urbanity. The association of neighborhood social capital with individual health was assessed by multilevel logistic regression analysis. Our results show that neighborhood social capital is positively associated with health. Interestingly, residents in urban neighborhoods benefit particularly from their neighborhood social capital.

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