• Maria Holst
  • Louise Aagaard Sørensen
4. term, Sociology, Master (Master Programme)
Health Inequalities in Relation to Social Capital: A Quantitative Research of the Social Capital’s Impact on Citizens’ Health Related Behaviour in the North Denmark Region. This thesis will set out to obtain knowledge of the significance of social capital on inequalities in health related lifestyle (nutrion, smoking, alcohol and physical exercise) in the North Denmark Region. The thesis will take its starting point in the health-profile-survey carried out in the North Denmark Region. Social capital is in this thesis utilized as social trust defined as generalized and institutional trust and social relations defined as the quantity and quality of social relations as well as civic engagement. The thesis has made use of a multiple correspondence analysis to set up a space for social capital, in which citizens’ health behaviour can be placed. By employing this relatively explorative approach, overall patterns between the citizens’ social capital and the health related lifestyle in the North Denmark Region has been established. It is possible to establish a general tendency based upon the correspondence analysis, which indicates that structural social inequality in relation to health behaviours is related to social capital. Primarily a high degree of social capital is related to a healthy lifestyle with the exception of alcohol behaviour. On the other hand, a low degree of social capital is associated with less healthy health behaviour – again with the exception of alcohol behaviour. In order to contribute to an extended explanatory dimension in the examination of how social capital influences citizens health behaviour in the North Denmark Region, multivariat logistic regression-analysis have been applied in this thesis. In the light of this it can be concluded that a positive connection between social trust, social relations and the citizens’ health behaviour is present. Thus, social capital can be considered as a contributing explanatory factor in relation to the health behaviour of inhabitants in the North Denmark Region. In continuation of the above, it is indicated that social capital defined as participation in association activities can modify the social inequality related to education in relation to self-rated health. Within the different classifications of education short and middle-range training association activities can allegedly constitute a social mechanism which generates a better self-rated health. On the other hand, a positive effect based upon association activities cannot cut across the classifications of education. This indicates that association activities to a certain extent can protect the citizens against the social inequality based upon educational degree in self-rated health.
Publication date2008
Number of pages168
Publishing institutionAalborg Universitet
ID: 14978714