Encyclopedia of Behavioral Medicine

Living Edition
| Editors: Marc Gellman

Social Cohesion

  • Yori GidronEmail author
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4614-6439-6_1503-2


Social cohesion (SC) refers to the degree to which links between a society’s members are strong and the degree to which people in a community share values and goals and are interdependent. Durkehiem conceptualized SC as a major protective variable against adversities including suicide. In his seminal work, Durkheim found that Catholics have lower suicide rates than Protestants, and he attributed this to greater social control and cohesion in the former than among the latter (Pickering and Walford 2000). Kelleher and Daly (1990) found that reduced SC (indexed by reduced marriage rates and increased separations) was among the variables possibly contributing to increased suicide rates in Ireland, between 1970 and 1985. The Dutch sociologist Geert Hofstede conducted the first empirically based quantification of international cultural dimensions in the 1970s in IBM plants around the world. Among his four main cultural dimensions, individualism emerged, which can be seen as the...

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References and Further Readings

  1. Chaix, B., Lindström, M., Rosvall, M., & Merlo, J. (2008). Neighborhood social interactions and risk of acute myocardial infarction. Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health, 62, 62–68.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  2. Clark, C. J., Guo, H., Lunos, S., Aggarwal, N. T., Beck, T., Evans, D. A., et al. (2011). Neighborhood cohesion is associated with reduced risk of stroke mortality. Stroke, 42, 1212–1217.CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  3. Gidron, Y., & Ferreira, O. (2012). Culture & international suicide rates. Paper presented at the sixth annual international conference on psychology, May, Athens.Google Scholar
  4. Kark, J. D., Carmel, S., Sinnreich, R., Goldberger, N., & Friedlander, Y. (1996). Psychosocial factors among members of religious and secular kibbutzim. Israel Journal of Medical Sciences, 32, 185–194.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  5. Kelleher, M. F., & Daly, M. (1990). Suicide in Cork and Ireland. British Medical Journal, 157, 533–538.Google Scholar
  6. Pickering, W. S. F., & Walford, G. (Eds.). (2000). Durkheim’s suicide: A century of research and debate. London: Psychology Press/Routledge.Google Scholar
  7. Walton, G. M., & Cohen, G. L. (2007). A question of belonging: Race, social fit, and achievement. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 92, 82–96.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.SCALabLille 3 University and Siric OncollileLilleFrance