Prevalence Rates of Associations across Territories

  • David H. Smith
  • Brent Never
  • John Mohan
  • Lionel Prouteau
  • Lars Torpe


This chapter reviews research on incidence–prevalence–exit (demise) rates of membership associations (MAs) across sets of geographic territories of varying scope, with a main focus on explaining MA prevalence rates (frequencies of associations in a territory). Basic changes in the economic structure/system of societies explain the four, global, associational revolutions in human history over the past 10 millennia (Smith 2016b). The determinants of prevalence vary across levels of analysis, but sheer population size is always a major determinant of greater absolute MA prevalence. Other important influences on MA prevalence at the level of nations include gross domestic product (GDP) per capita, average level of formal education, extent of civil liberties, government expenditures per capita, MA density in prior time period, prevalence of association-support infrastructure organizations, and experience with democracy (Schofer and Longhofer 2011; Smith and Shen 2002).


Civil Society Voluntary Activity Public Perception Positive Perception Voluntary Organization 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s) 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • David H. Smith
    • 1
  • Brent Never
    • 2
  • John Mohan
    • 3
  • Lionel Prouteau
    • 4
  • Lars Torpe
    • 5
  1. 1.USA
  2. 2.USA
  3. 3.UK
  4. 4.France
  5. 5.Denmark

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