Handbook of Research Methods and Applications in Social Capital
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Handbook of Research Methods and Applications in Social Capital

  • Handbooks of Research Methods and Applications series

Edited by Yaojun Li

Social capital is fundamentally concerned with resources in social relations. This Handbook brings together leading scholars from around the world to address important questions on the determinants, manifestations and consequences of social capital. Combining cutting-edge theory and appropriate data and methods, it presents a challenge to both social capital researchers interested in explaining social inequality and to policy-makers with responsibility for designing effective measures for enhancing social cohesion.
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Chapter 14: Social capital, ethnic density and mental health among ethnic minority people in England: a mixed-methods study

Laia Bécares and James Nazroo

Extract

Ethnic minority people have been reported to be healthier when living in neighbourhoods with a higher concentration of people from their own ethnic group, a so-called ethnic density effect (Halpern and Nazroo, 2000; Pickett and Wilkinson, 2008; Becares et al., 2009; Becares et al., 2012a; Shaw et al., 2012). These findings might seem counterintuitive, given that ethnic minority people are overrepresented in deprived neighbourhoods (Karlsen et al., 2002; Becares et al., 2012b; Stafford et al., 2009), which have been found to be associated with poorer health across a wide range of outcomes (Pickett and Pearl, 2001; Riva et al., 2007). However, when adjusting for the concentration of poverty and deprivation in a neighbourhood, several studies in the US, UK and elsewhere have found ethnic minority people who live in ethnically dense areas to have better mental health (Shaw et al., 2012) and, for some outcomes, physical health (Becares et al., 2012a) compared with ethnic minority people living in areas with lower ethnic density. Ethnic density, which is generally thought of in terms of the negative impacts of residential concentration, can also be considered in terms of social networks and supportive communities, providing health protective and promoting effects for ethnic minority people (Halpern and Nazroo, 2000; Becares et al., 2009; Pickett and Wilkinson, 2008).

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