Mental Health, Deprivation, and the Neighborhood Social Environment: A Network Analysis

E. McElroy, J.C. McIntyre, R.P. Bentall, T. Wilson, K. Holt, C. Kullu, R. Nathan, A. Kerr, K. Panagaki, M. McKeown, P. Saini, M. Gabbay, R. Corcoran

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

30 Citations (Scopus)


Different aspects of the neighborhood social environment have been linked with mental ill health; however, the mechanisms underlying these associations remain poorly understood because of the number and complexity of the components involved. We used a novel statistical approach, network analysis, to explore the complex associations between neighborhood social cohesion, social disorder, and mental-health symptoms in a sample of 3,670 adults from an economically deprived region of the United Kingdom (mean age = 49.34 years, SD = 18.87; 57% female). Elasso regularized networks were estimated, and network comparisons were conducted by level of deprivation. Mental-health symptoms and neighborhood components formed relatively distinct clusters of items. These domains were linked primarily by paranoia, although only in the most deprived group. Drunken/rowdy behavior was particularly influential within the neighborhood cluster; therefore, policies aimed at reducing such disruptive behavior could have positive knock-on effects for social cohesion and mental health.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)719-734
Number of pages15
JournalClinical Psychological Science
Issue number4
Early online date26 Mar 2019
Publication statusPublished (in print/issue) - 1 Jul 2019


  • deprivation
  • mental health
  • neighborhood environment
  • network analysis
  • social capital
  • antisocial behavior


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