Successful health promotion and disease prevention efforts must be designed with a thorough knowledge of the community in which they are to be used. Unfortunately, our understanding of the term “community” is currently in a muddle. In this paper we clarify the nature of communities by examining how the concept has been treated in four classic community studies. Three important points emerge: (1) that community is a multifaceted concept, (2) that communities are best viewed as assortments of social processes, and (3) that each community has within it many different communities. We then illustrate these findings with a commentary on Kelly's often cited longitudinal community psychology study of adolescent boys attending two high schools.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Leadership and Management
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health