Book chapters will be unavailable on Saturday 24th August between 8am-12pm BST. This is for essential maintenance which will provide improved performance going forwards. Please accept our apologies for any inconvenience caused.
To send content items to your account,
please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies.
If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account.
Find out more about sending content to .
To send content items to your Kindle, first ensure firstname.lastname@example.org
is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings
on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part
of your Kindle email address below.
Find out more about sending to your Kindle.
Note you can select to send to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations.
‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be sent to your device when it is connected to wi-fi.
‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.
Nous avons documenté et comparé les caractéristiques environnementales potentiellement associées à la participation sociale de Québécois âgés, selon le niveau de ruralité. Une enquête a été réalisée auprès de Québécois âgés de 65 ans et plus recrutés par différents regroupements d’aînés et les réseaux sociaux. Les répondants ont rempli le Questionnaire du potentiel de participation sociale, développé à partir d’une recension systématique des écrits. Selon les 515 aînés, âgés en moyenne de 71,5 ans, les caractéristiques environnementales liées à la participation sociale, ainsi que la convivialité des villes et des quartiers, sont perçues plus favorablement dans les milieux métropolitains et urbains que dans les milieux ruraux. Toutefois, l’accès à l’autobus ainsi que l’accueil et l’ouverture des gens du quartier sont davantage appréciés par les aînés ruraux. Ces résultats témoignent de la présence d’inégalités de participation sociale selon le niveau de ruralité et permettent d’envisager de nouvelles pistes d’action.
Neighbourhood greenness or vegetative presence has been associated with indicators of health and well-being, but its relationship to depression in older adults has been less studied. Understanding the role of environmental factors in depression may inform and complement traditional depression interventions, including both prevention and treatment.
This study examines the relationship between neighbourhood greenness and depression diagnoses among older adults in Miami-Dade County, Florida, USA.
Analyses examined 249 405 beneficiaries enrolled in Medicare, a USA federal health insurance programme for older adults. Participants were 65 years and older, living in the same Miami location across 2 years (2010–2011). Multilevel analyses assessed the relationship between neighbourhood greenness, assessed by average block-level normalised difference vegetative index via satellite imagery, and depression diagnosis using USA Medicare claims data. Covariates were individual age, gender, race/ethnicity, number of comorbid health conditions and neighbourhood median household income.
Over 9% of beneficiaries had a depression diagnosis. Higher levels of greenness were associated with lower odds of depression, even after adjusting for demographics and health comorbidities. When compared with individuals residing in the lowest tertile of greenness, individuals from the middle tertile (medium greenness) had 8% lower odds of depression (odds ratio 0.92; 95% CI 0.88, 0.96; P = 0.0004) and those from the high tertile (high greenness) had 16% lower odds of depression (odds ratio 0.84; 95% CI 0.79, 0.88; P < 0.0001).
Higher levels of greenness may reduce depression odds among older adults. Increasing greenery – even to moderate levels – may enhance individual-level approaches to promoting wellness.
Studies on neighbourhood characteristics and depression show equivocal results.
This large-scale pooled analysis examines whether urbanisation, socioeconomic, physical and social neighbourhood characteristics are associated with the prevalence and severity of depression.
Cross-sectional design including data are from eight Dutch cohort studies (n= 32 487). Prevalence of depression, either DSM-IV diagnosis of depressive disorder or scoring for moderately severe depression on symptom scales, and continuous depression severity scores were analysed. Neighbourhood characteristics were linked using postal codes and included (a) urbanisation grade, (b) socioeconomic characteristics: socioeconomic status, home value, social security beneficiaries and non-Dutch ancestry, (c) physical characteristics: air pollution, traffic noise and availability of green space and water, and (d) social characteristics: social cohesion and safety. Multilevel regression analyses were adjusted for the individual's age, gender, educational level and income. Cohort-specific estimates were pooled using random-effects analysis.
The pooled analysis showed that higher urbanisation grade (odds ratio (OR) = 1.05, 95% CI 1.01–1.10), lower socioeconomic status (OR = 0.90, 95% CI 0.87–0.95), higher number of social security beneficiaries (OR = 1.12, 95% CI 1.06–1.19), higher percentage of non-Dutch residents (OR = 1.08, 95% CI 1.02–1.14), higher levels of air pollution (OR = 1.07, 95% CI 1.01–1.12), less green space (OR = 0.94, 95% CI 0.88–0.99) and less social safety (OR = 0.92, 95% CI 0.88–0.97) were associated with higher prevalence of depression. All four socioeconomic neighbourhood characteristics and social safety were also consistently associated with continuous depression severity scores.
This large-scale pooled analysis across eight Dutch cohort studies shows that urbanisation and various socioeconomic, physical and social neighbourhood characteristics are associated with depression, indicating that a wide range of environmental aspects may relate to poor mental health.
An inclusive neighbourhood is a key facilitator enabling older adults to age in place. Neighbourhoods have been identified as a dimension of social exclusion important to older adults, and it has been argued that older adults are particularly vulnerable to neighbourhood change. The aim of this study was to explore older adults’ experiences of neighbourhood exclusion within the context of neighbourhood change. Focus groups were undertaken in the urban and rural areas of a metropolitan borough in England involving a total of 41 older adults, with data analysed via thematic analysis. Urban areas in the borough studied have transformed following the closure of the mining industry, with a high level of deprivation in many areas, while some rural areas have undergone gentrification. Within the context of structural neighbourhood change, four themes were identified: community cohesion, political agency, feelings of safety and the physical environment. The themes were interlinked, which calls for collaboration across traditional lines of professional responsibility, and for research that encompasses different aspects of neighbourhood exclusion. This study contributes with knowledge on older adults’ experiences of exclusion, including novel findings on the importance of political agency and collective memory, and identifies actions to combat exclusion. An active involvement of older adults in the development of initiatives to tackle social exclusion is recommended.
To assess restaurant children’s menus for content and nutritional quality; and to investigate the relationship between the restaurant consumer food environment for children and neighbourhood-level socio-economic characteristics within and between one Canadian city and one US city.
Cross-sectional observational study.
London, ON, Canada and Rochester, NY, USA.
Restaurant children’s menus were assessed, scored and compared using the Children’s Menu Assessment tool. We quantified neighbourhood accessibility to restaurants by calculating 800 m road-network buffers around the centroid of each city census block and created a new Neighbourhood Restaurant Quality Index for Children (NRQI-C) comprising the sum of restaurant menu scores divided by the total number of restaurants within each area. After weighting by population, we examined associations between NRQI-C and neighbourhood socio-economic characteristics using correlations and multiple regression analyses.
Nutritional quality of children’s menus was greater, on average, in Rochester compared with London. Only one variable remained significant in the regression analyses for both cities: proportion of visible minorities had a positive effect on neighbourhood NRQI-C scores in London, whereas the reverse was true in Rochester.
Results suggest the presence of a socio-economic disparity within Rochester, where children in more disadvantaged areas have poorer access to better nutritional quality restaurant choices. In London, results suggest an inverse relationship across the city where children in more disadvantaged areas have better access to better nutritional quality restaurant choices. Given these disparate results, research on restaurant nutritional quality for children requires additional consideration.
To examine associations between availability of fast-food restaurants and convenience stores in the home and school neighbourhoods, considered separately and together, and adolescents’ fast-food and sugar-sweetened beverage (SSB) intakes.
Cross-sectional observational study.
East London, UK.
Adolescents (n 3089; aged 13–15 years) from the Olympic Regeneration in East London (ORiEL) Study self-reported their weekly frequency of fast-food and SSB consumption. We used food business addresses collected from local authority registers to derive absolute (counts) and relative (proportions) exposure measures to fast-food restaurants and convenience stores within 800 m from home, school, and home and school combined. Associations between absolute and relative measures of the food environment and fast-food and SSB intakes were assessed using Poisson regression models with robust standard errors.
Absolute exposure to fast-food restaurants or convenience stores in the home, school, or combined home and school neighbourhoods was not associated with any of the outcomes. High SSB intake was associated with relative exposure to convenience stores in the residential neighbourhood (risk ratio=1·45; 95 % CI 1·08, 1·96) and in the home and school neighbourhoods combined (risk ratio=1·69; 95 % CI 1·11, 2·57).
We found no evidence of an association between absolute exposure to fast-food restaurants and convenience stores around home and school and adolescents’ fast-food and SSB intakes. Relative exposure, which measures the local diversity of the neighbourhood food environment, was positively associated with SSB intake. Relative measures of the food environment may better capture the environmental risks for poor diet than absolute measures.
Despite the fact that urbanisation, population ageing and international migration constitute major societal developments of our time, little attention has been paid to studying them together in a comprehensive manner. In this paper, we argue that, when treating age and ethnicity as practical processes for addressing and identifying with social groups, it is necessary to do so from a ‘doing’ perspective. The question we ask focuses on which social memberships are made relevant or irrelevant in residential environments and how that relevance or irrelevance is established. Drawing upon a quantitative study among individuals of Turkish migrant origin living in Vienna, Austria, we find that it is rather common for the respondents to have been assigned to multiple intersecting social groups and that they were treated unfairly in their own neighbourhoods. However, such ascriptions do not necessarily correspond to objective categorisations of research or subjective identifications. Hence, the discrimination that is present in a neighbourhood does not necessarily lead to decreased place attachment or a diminishing sense of home. In fact, we find that the ‘satisfaction paradox’ is quite common in environmental gerontology and that it may actually intersect with the ‘immigration paradox’. Applying processual intersectionality is not only fruitful for research, it can also improve the conceptualisation of age-friendly cities.
Which neighbourhood factors most consistently impact on depression and anxiety remains unclear. This study examines whether objectively obtained socioeconomic, physical and social aspects of the neighbourhood in which persons live are associated with the presence and severity of depressive and anxiety disorders.
Cross-sectional data are from the Netherlands Study of Depression and Anxiety including participants (n = 2980) with and without depressive and anxiety disorders in the past year (based on DSM-based psychiatric interviews). We also determined symptom severity of depression (Inventory of Depression Symptomatology), anxiety (Beck Anxiety Inventory) and fear (Fear Questionnaire). Neighbourhood characteristics comprised socioeconomic factors (socioeconomic status, home value, number of social security beneficiaries and percentage of immigrants), physical factors (air pollution, traffic noise and availability of green space and water) and social factors (social cohesion and safety). Multilevel regression analyses were performed with the municipality as the second level while adjusting for individual sociodemographic variables and household income.
Not urbanization grade, but rather neighbourhood socioecononomic factors (low socioeconomic status, more social security beneficiaries and more immigrants), physical factors (high levels of traffic noise) and social factors (lower social cohesion and less safety) were associated with the presence of depressive and anxiety disorders. Most of these neighbourhood characteristics were also associated with increased depressive and anxiety symptoms severity.
These findings suggest that it is not population density in the neighbourhood, but rather the quality of socioeconomic, physical and social neighbourhood characteristics that is associated with the presence and severity of affective disorders.
In recent years, there has been an increasing focus on creating age-friendly cities to accommodate the changing needs of older people and to promote their overall health and wellbeing. This paper focuses on some of the urban planning implications related to maintaining the social health, as a main component of overall health and wellbeing, of older people. Specifically, we look at the role and accessibility of third places (popular public places where many people go to socialise) in relation to older people living in different neighbourhood built-form patterns, and how these factors impact on the formation of absent, weak and strong social ties. The data draw upon interviews with 54 older people living in different neighbourhood built-form patterns on the Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia. Our findings demonstrate the significant role third places have in affording older people opportunities to engage in the social lives of their local communities, thus contributing to their social health and overall wellbeing. This research supports previous studies relating to the accessibility of amenities by re-emphasising the importance of planning for the provision of third places that are conveniently located and easily accessible by older people. The paper concludes by arguing for the planning of transport and third-place interventions in Australia's sprawling suburban landscapes to allow older people more opportunities to be socially connected.
The literature has documented a positive relationship between walkable built environments and outdoor mobility in older adults. Yet, surprisingly absent is any consideration of how weather conditions modify the impact of neighbourhood walkability. Using archived weather data linked to survey data collected from a sample of older adults in Vancouver, Canada, we found that car-dependent neighbourhoods (featuring longer block lengths, fewer intersections, and greater distance to amenities) became inaccessible in snow. Even older adults who lived in very walkable neighbourhoods walked to 25 per cent fewer destinations in snow. It is crucial to consider the impact of weather in the relationship between neighbourhood walkability and older adult mobility.
To investigate the association between neighbourhood food availability and the consumption of ready-to-consume products (RCP), either processed or ultra-processed, and unprocessed/minimally processed foods (UF-MPF) by children.
Cross-sectional. 24 h Dietary recalls were collected from children from January 2010 to June 2011. Neighbourhood food availability data were collected from 672 food stores located within 500 m of participants’ homes, using an adapted and validated instrument. Neighbourhood-level socio-economic status (SES) was obtained by calculating the mean years of household head’s education level in each census tract covered by 500 m buffers. Foods that were consumed by children and/or available in the food stores were classified based on their degree of industrial processing. Multilevel random-effect models examined the association between neighbourhood food availability and children’s diets.
Children (n 513) under 10 years old (292 aged <6 years, 221 aged ≥6 years).
The availability of RCP in food stores was associated with increased RCP consumption (P<0·001) and decreased UF-MPF consumption (P<0·001). The consumption of UF-MPF was positively associated with neighbourhood-level SES (P<0·01), but not with the availability of UF-MPF in the neighbourhood.
Results suggest that food policies and interventions that aim to reduce RCP consumption in Santos and similar settings should focus on reducing the availability in food stores. The results also suggest that interventions should not only increase the availability of UF-MPF in lower-SES neighbourhoods, but should strive to make UF-MPF accessible within these environments.
This article describes the social organisation of the ‘Tranvieri' boxing gym in Bolognina, a working-class neighbourhood of Bologna that has been rapidly changing over the last 20 years due to the closure of factories and the arrival of immigrants, especially from the Maghreb. The gym population has changed accordingly: currently about two-thirds of those attending the gym as a leisure centre have immigrant parents. The author studied the everyday life of these young boxers, born in Italy but without citizenship, who visit the gym daily after finishing vocational school, work and family responsibilities. For them, boxing is not a solution to the frustration inflicted by a society they perceive as indifferent if not hostile towards them, but it does offer them the possibility of not being represented as persons excluded from that society.
To investigate the associations of household and neighbourhood socio-economic position (SEP) with indicators of both under- and overnutrition in adolescents and to explore sex differences.
Analysis of anthropometric, household and neighbourhood SEP data from the Birth to Twenty Plus cohort born in 1990. Anthropometric outcomes were BMI (thinness, overweight and obesity) and percentage body fat (%BF; low, high). Associations between these and the household wealth index, caregiver education and neighbourhood SEP tertile measures were examined using binary logistic regression.
Johannesburg–Soweto, South Africa.
Adolescents aged 17–19 years (n 2019; 48·2 % men).
Women had a significantly higher combined prevalence of overweight/obesity (26·2 %) than men (8·2 %) whereas men had a significantly higher prevalence of thinness than women (22·2 % v. 10·6 %, respectively). Having a low neighbourhood social support index was associated with higher odds of high %BF in women (OR=1·59; 95 % CI 1·03, 2·44). A low household wealth index was associated with lower odds of both overweight (OR=0·31; 95 % CI 0·12, 0·76) and high %BF in men (OR=0·28; 95 % CI 0·10, 0·78). A low or middle household wealth index was associated with higher odds of being thin in men (OR=1·90; 95 % CI 1·09, 3·31 and OR=1·80; 95 % CI 1·03, 3·15, respectively). For women, a low household wealth index was associated with lower odds of being thin (OR=0·49; 95 % CI 0·25, 0·96).
The study highlights that even within a relatively small urban area the nutrition transition manifests itself differently in men and women and across SEP indicators. Understanding the challenges for different sexes at different ages is vital in helping to plan public health services.
This article draws on case study research of a low-income neighbourhood in Leeds to explore experiences of, and attitudes towards, place-based community. Through tracing social relations in the neighbourhood over time, from the early twentieth century to the present day, the ways in which community is embedded in everyday activities and social interactions, and the social impact of socioeconomic change on local neighbourhoods, is demonstrated. It is argued that the relentless and nostalgic focus on local communities as an idealised form of social solidarity has meant that the reasons why place-based community has declined over time have been overlooked. The article challenges the assumption that social fragmentation on neighbourhood levels necessarily indicates antisocial trends or a lack of a sense of duty towards others, and draws attention to the constraints people face in developing relationships with others. Questions are raised about the viability of top-down attempts to shape social relations in particular ways.
Due to demographic changes and a widely supported policy of ageing in place, the number of community-dwelling older people will increase immensely. Thus, supportive neighbourhoods enabling older people to age in place successfully are required. Using Q-methodology, we examined older people's perceptions of the comparative importance of neighbourhood characteristics for ageing in place. Based on the World Health Organization's Global Age-friendly Cities guide, we developed 26 statements about physical and social neighbourhood characteristics. Thirty-two older people in Rotterdam, half of whom were frail, rank-ordered these statements. Q-factor analysis revealed three distinct viewpoints each among frail and non-frail older people. Comparisons within and between groups are discussed. Although both frail and non-frail older people strongly desired a neighbourhood enabling them to age in place, they have divergent views on such a neighbourhood. Older people's dependence on the neighbourhood seems to be dynamic, affected by changing social and physical conditions and levels of frailty.
As populations age, increased focus is given to the importance of enabling older people to age in place. The study reported in this paper explored the extent to which older people considered their homes and neighbourhoods to be ‘supportive’, and sought to increase understanding of the needs and experiences of older people and their expectations of future housing needs. This paper reports qualitative data from the Housing and Independent Living (HAIL) study carried out in Australia. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 202 community-dwelling people aged 75–79 years. Interviews were transcribed, coded and analysed using computer-assisted qualitative analysis and a narrative approach to identify broad themes. Thematic analysis was used to examine and understand how occupants subjectively viewed their homes, and how they planned to adapt/modify either their activities or homes to accommodate changing needs. Six key themes emerged, namely housing choice, attachment to place, financial issues, changes to the home over time, transport, and anticipating the future. In this study, people who most strongly identified with and felt connected to their neighbours/communities had more positive perceptions of their homes and communities, and may be better able to remain in their home despite increasing disability or frailty. Housing policies and home and urban design should ensure home and neighbourhood environments are safe, accessible, promote positive associations, and are adaptable to facilitate independence and accommodate change as people age.
To describe availability and frequency of use of local snack-food outlets and determine whether reported use of these outlets was associated with dietary intakes.
Data were cross-sectional. Availability and frequency of use of three types of local snack-food outlets were reported. Daily dietary intakes were based on the average of up to four 24 h dietary recalls. Multivariable linear regression models estimated average daily intakes of energy, sugar-sweetened beverages (SSB) and snack foods/sweets associated with use of outlets.
Multi-site, observational cohort study in the USA, 2004–2006.
Girls aged 6–8 years (n 1010).
Weekly frequency of use of local snack-food outlets increased with number of available types of outlets. Girls with access to only one type of outlet reported consuming food/beverage items less frequently than girls with access to two or three types of outlets (P <0·001). Girls’ daily energy, SSB and snack foods/sweets intakes increased with greater use of outlets. Girls who reported using outlets>1 to 3 times/week consumed 0·27 (95 % CI 0·13, 0·40) servings of SSB more daily than girls who reported no use. Girls who reported using outlets>3 times/week consumed 449·61 (95 % CI 134·93, 764·29) kJ, 0·43 (95 % CI 0·29, 0·58) servings of SSB and 0·38 (95 % CI 0·12, 0·65) servings of snack foods/sweets more daily than those who reported no use.
Girls’ frequency of use of local snack-food outlets increases with the number of available types of outlets and is associated with greater daily intakes of energy and servings of SSB and snack foods/sweets.
The extent to which different symptom dimensions vary according to epidemiological factors associated with categorical definitions of first-episode psychosis (FEP) is unknown. We hypothesized that positive psychotic symptoms, including paranoid delusions and depressive symptoms, would be more prominent in more urban environments.
We collected clinical and epidemiological data on 469 people with FEP (ICD-10 F10–F33) in two centres of the Aetiology and Ethnicity in Schizophrenia and Other Psychoses (AESOP) study: Southeast London and Nottinghamshire. We used multilevel regression models to examine neighbourhood-level and between-centre differences in five symptom dimensions (reality distortion, negative symptoms, manic symptoms, depressive symptoms and disorganization) underpinning Schedules for Clinical Assessment in Neuropsychiatry (SCAN) Item Group Checklist (IGC) symptoms. Delusions of persecution and reference, along with other individual IGC symptoms, were inspected for area-level variation.
Reality distortion [estimated effect size (EES) 0.15, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.06–0.24] and depressive symptoms (EES 0.21, 95% CI 0.07–0.34) were elevated in people with FEP living in more urban Southeast London but disorganized symptomatology was lower (EES –0.06, 95% CI –0.10 to –0.02), after controlling for confounders. Delusions of persecution were not associated with increased neighbourhood population density [adjusted odds ratio (aOR) 1.01, 95% CI 0.83–1.23], although an effect was observed for delusions of reference (aOR 1.41, 95% CI 1.12–1.77). Hallucinatory symptoms showed consistent elevation in more densely populated neighbourhoods (aOR 1.32, 95% CI 1.09–1.61).
In people experiencing FEP, elevated levels of reality distortion and depressive symptoms were observed in more urban, densely populated neighbourhoods. No clear association was observed for paranoid delusions; hallucinations were consistently associated with increased population density. These results suggest that urban environments may affect the syndromal presentation of psychotic disorders.
Characteristics related to the areas where people live have been associated with suicide risk, although these might reflect aggregation into these communities of individuals with mental health or social problems. No studies have examined whether area characteristics during childhood are associated with subsequent suicide, or whether risk associated with individual characteristics varies according to childhood neighbourhood context.
We conducted a longitudinal study of 204 323 individuals born in Sweden in 1972 and 1977 with childhood data linked to suicide (n = 314; 0.15%) up to age 26–31 years. Multilevel modelling was used to examine: (i) whether school-, municipality- or county-level characteristics during childhood are associated with later suicide, independently of individual effects, and (ii) whether associations between individual characteristics and suicide vary according to school context (reflecting both peer group and neighbourhood effects).
Associations between suicide and most contextual measures, except for school-level gender composition, were explained by individual characteristics. There was some evidence of cross-level effects of individual- and school-level markers of ethnicity and deprivation on suicide risk, with qualitative interaction patterns. For example, having foreign-born parents increased the risk for individuals raised in areas where they were in a relative minority, but protected against suicide in areas where larger proportions of the population had foreign-born parents.
Characteristics that define individuals as being different from most people in their local environment as they grow up may increase suicide risk. If robustly replicated, these findings have potentially important implications for understanding the aetiology of suicide and informing social policy.
This paper takes the quality of life in the neighbourhood as a starting point and appeals to the framework of Age-friendly Cities to gain insights in how ‘the neighbourhood as a physical surrounding’ can either promote or hinder feelings of unsafety in later life. It examines the impact of the perceived design of the neighbourhood on feelings of unsafety in later life. Literature on the relationship between feelings of unsafety and the neighbourhood mainly concentrates on incivilities and disorder. Other physical-spatial features of the neighbourhood are rarely taken into consideration. Using data generated from the Belgian Ageing Studies (N=25,980) multivariate analyses indicate that a neighbourhood which is perceived to be physically adapted to the needs of older people (in terms of accessibility and distance to services) heightens feelings of safety. The findings demonstrate the need to reduce behaviour constraints by redesigning fear-related physical features. This conclusion raises practical implications and formulates a number of policy recommendations to tackle feelings of unsafety in an ageing society.