Neighbourhood social capital improves individual health quality of life in a national sample from Wales
AbstractNeighbourhood social capital is often claimed to improve health but in Britain this claim finds little support. I examine the effects of neighbourhood social capital on the Welsh health quality of life in 2007 using instrumental variable estimator. By extending the influential Grossman health production model and borrowing from the Blume-Brock-Durlauf statistical mechanics of social interactions model, suitable instruments for identification are readily obtained. Instruments (neighbourhood ethnic diversity and residence length) were collected from separate survey. Neighbourhood social capital and deprivation measures were likewise independently gathered from measures of individual socioeconomic status and health (SF-36). In the national sample there are 13,557 respondents residing in 1,152 neighbourhoods. Neighbourhood deprivations invariably reduce individual health quality of life but neighbourhood social capital more than compensate for this. Because the instruments are strong enough to identify the effects, I show that friendly neighbourhood and friendly neighbours, sense of community in the neighbourhood, trust, ready exchange of information and goods, and sense of belonging improve residents' health. Public health practitioners have these measures as additional tools in their box when formulating policy to improve public health.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 16758.
Date of creation: 12 Aug 2009
Date of revision:
neighbourhood social capital; SF-36; individual quality of life; physical health;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- D71 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Social Choice; Clubs; Committees; Associations
- I12 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Health Production
- I18 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Government Policy; Regulation; Public Health
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2009-08-16 (All new papers)
- NEP-SOC-2009-08-16 (Social Norms & Social Capital)
- NEP-URE-2009-08-16 (Urban & Real Estate Economics)
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Blume Lawrence E., 1993.
"The Statistical Mechanics of Strategic Interaction,"
Games and Economic Behavior,
Elsevier, vol. 5(3), pages 387-424, July.
- L. Blume, 2010. "The Statistical Mechanics of Strategic Interaction," Levine's Working Paper Archive 488, David K. Levine.
- Blume,L.E. & Durlauf,S.N., 2005. "Identifying social interactions : a review," Working papers 12, Wisconsin Madison - Social Systems.
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