Neighborhood effects on health: Exploring the links and assessing the evidence

Ingrid Gould Ellen, Tod Mijanovich, Keri Nicole Dillman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

This article explores the possible causal pathways through which neighborhoods might affect health and then reviews the existing evidence. Although methodological issues make the literature inconclusive, the authors offer a provisioned hypothesis for how neighborhoods shape health outcomes. They hypothesize that neighborhoods may primarily influence health in two ways: first, through relatively short-term influences on behaviors, attitudes, and health-care utilization, thereby affecting health conditions that are most immediately responsive to such influences; and second, through a longer-term process of "weathering," whereby the accumulated stress, lower environmental quality, and limited resources of poorer communities, experienced over many years, erodes the health of residents in ways that make them more vulnerable to mortality from any given disease. Finally, drawing on the more extensive research that has been done exploring the effects of neighborhoods on education and employment, the authors suggest several directions for future research.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)391-408
Number of pages18
JournalJournal of Urban Affairs
Volume23
Issue number3-4
StatePublished - 2001

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health
evidence
environmental quality
health care
weathering
mortality
utilization
effect on health
education
resident
Disease
resource
resources
community
literature
effect

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Urban Studies

Cite this

Neighborhood effects on health : Exploring the links and assessing the evidence. / Ellen, Ingrid Gould; Mijanovich, Tod; Dillman, Keri Nicole.

In: Journal of Urban Affairs, Vol. 23, No. 3-4, 2001, p. 391-408.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Ellen, Ingrid Gould ; Mijanovich, Tod ; Dillman, Keri Nicole. / Neighborhood effects on health : Exploring the links and assessing the evidence. In: Journal of Urban Affairs. 2001 ; Vol. 23, No. 3-4. pp. 391-408.
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