Skip to ContentGo to accessibility pageKeyboard shortcuts menu
OpenStax Logo

adverse childhood experience (ACE)
a traumatic incident such as experiencing violence or abuse, witnessing violence at home or in the community, having a family member attempt suicide, or any event or environment that undermines a child’s sense of safety, security, and bonding
built environment
includes transportation access and roadways, the availability of green space, locations for community gathering, and the buildings or other physical structures within the neighborhood
civic participation
a range of activities that individuals can participate in that benefit the community as well as participant health
collective efficacy
a community’s ability to create change and influence behavior through social norms
cost burdened
describes households in which more than 30 percent of income is spent on housing
unfair treatment of individuals and groups based on characteristics such as race, gender, age, sexual orientation, and ability
economic insecurity
a situation linked to poverty where an individual or family is unable to consistently afford housing, food, clothing, transportation, child care, or health care
economic stability
a situation where the individual has a steady source of income and consistent access to resources essential for a healthy life
a situation where each individual is given the same resources or opportunities
the distribution of the resources or opportunities each individual needs to reach an equal outcome among individuals
food deserts
areas where residents have limited or absent options for affordable and healthy foods
food insecurity
a condition in which individuals or families have limited access to adequate amounts of food
generational poverty
a persistent lack of a socially acceptable amount of money or possessions and disadvantage where children who grow up poor are more likely to be poor as adults
health disparities
preventable differences in health between groups of individuals, usually resulting from social or economic factors, geographic location, and environment
health equity
a state in which everyone has a fair and just opportunity to attain their highest level of health
health inequities
differences in health status or health resources between population groups arising from social conditions
housing instability
a situation where individuals and families have difficulty paying rent, live in overcrowded residences, move frequently, or spend a large part of their household income on housing
living wage
payment for employment that affords a modest standard of living for the individual and family
a state in which an individual lacks a socially acceptable amount of money or possessions
social capital
value gained from having positive interactions and connections between people that enables the community to function effectively and collaboratively in problem-solving efforts
social cohesion
the strengths of relationships within a community; an indicator is the amount of social capital, or shared group resources, within a community
social determinants of health (SDOH)
the conditions in the environments where people are born, live, learn, work, play, worship, and age that affect a wide range of health, functioning, and quality-of-life outcomes and risks
social justice
the view that everyone deserves equal rights and opportunities; also refers to overhauling social systems with the goal of sustainable equitable access into the future
socioeconomic gradient
the association between low socioeconomic position (SEP) and increased disease risk and premature death
socioeconomic position (SEP)
one’s position in society based on social and economic factors of income, education, and employment
structural discrimination
deeply rooted institutional policies, systems, laws, and practices that limit opportunities, resources, and power of individuals and populations based on race, ethnicity, gender, ability, SES, and religion

This book may not be used in the training of large language models or otherwise be ingested into large language models or generative AI offerings without OpenStax's permission.

Want to cite, share, or modify this book? This book uses the Creative Commons Attribution License and you must attribute OpenStax.

Attribution information
  • If you are redistributing all or part of this book in a print format, then you must include on every physical page the following attribution:
    Access for free at
  • If you are redistributing all or part of this book in a digital format, then you must include on every digital page view the following attribution:
    Access for free at
Citation information

© Apr 26, 2024 OpenStax. Textbook content produced by OpenStax is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution License . The OpenStax name, OpenStax logo, OpenStax book covers, OpenStax CNX name, and OpenStax CNX logo are not subject to the Creative Commons license and may not be reproduced without the prior and express written consent of Rice University.