Congratulations to PhD student David Hummel whose paper "Bridging the Divide: Does Social Capital Moderate the Impact of Polarization on Health" with Timothy Fraser, Dr. Costas Panagopoulos, Dr. Daniel P. Aldrich (NU Political Science Department) and Dr. Daniel Kim (Bouvé College of Health Sciences & School of Public Policy and Urban Affairs) has been accepted to Political Research Quarterly.
Bridging the Divide: Does Social Capital Moderate the Impact of Polarization on Health
Rising partisan polarization in the American public over the last decade has been linked to stress and anxiety, raising questions about how communities and public health experts should respond. As the strength of an individual’s social network correlates with better health outcomes, could building a diverse set of connections moderate the effect of political polarization on an individual’s health? This study examines the role of social capital as a key intervening variable in the relationship between polarization and health. Drawing on a nationally-representative survey of 2,752 US residents conducted in December 2019 compared with county level data, we use negative binomial, logit, and gamma models to examine the interaction between indicators of political polarization and bonding, bridging, and linking social capital on physical and mental health outcomes. We find consistent evidence that bonding social ties intervene to improve the physical and mental health of individuals in polarized communities, while bridging ties are related to worse health for politically isolated residents. By highlighting the relationship between polarization, social networks, and health, our findings shed light on how public health experts, and policymakers can improve health outcomes in polarized communities.
Professor, Political Science and Public Policy
An award winning author, Daniel Aldrich has published five books, more than seventy peer reviewed articles, and written op-eds for The New York Times, CNN, Asahi Shinbun, along with appearing on popular media outlets such as CNBC, MSNBC, NPR, and Huf…
Associate Professor of Health Sciences and Social Epidemiology
Daniel Kim’s research broadly encompasses the social and economic determinants of population health. Professor Kim currently serves as Principal Investigator of a R01 grant on the social determinants of cardiovascular diseases, funded by the Na…
Distinguished Professor of Political Science; Department Chair
A leading expert on campaigns and elections, voting behavior, political psychology, campaign finance, and experimental research, Dr. Panagopoulos has been part of the Decision Desk team at NBC News since the 2006 election cycle. He is also editor of …