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Delinquency in context; neighbourhood and gender interactions among adolescents

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Abstract

AIM: Delinquency among adolescents and antecedent conduct disorder among children has been recognized as a growing public mental health problem in contemporary societies. The contribution of the neighbourhood environment to delinquent behaviour was examined in a cohort of Dutch adolescents (aged approximately 11 years at baseline; n = 394).

METHODS: Multilevel regression analyses estimated associations between baseline neighbourhood socioeconomic status and social capital, and delinquent behaviour two years later controlling for individual-level variables.

RESULTS: A significant interaction effect was found between neighbourhood environment variables and gender in models of delinquency, indicating that associations between neighbourhood environment variables and delinquency were apparent, for the most part, in girls only. However, higher level of neighbourhood informal social control was associated with increased delinquency rates in boys.

CONCLUSION: In girls there is a longitudinal association between neighbourhood characteristics and delinquency, suggesting complex gender differences in the way the wider social environment impacts on behavioural outcomes.

    Research areas

  • Adolescent, Adolescent Behavior, Child, Female, Humans, Interpersonal Relations, Juvenile Delinquency, Male, Netherlands, Residence Characteristics, Journal Article, Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
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Details

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)148-58
Number of pages11
JournalEpidemiologia e Psichiatria Sociale-An International Journal for Epidemiology and Psychiatric Sciences
Volume19
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 8 Sep 2010