There is a growing recognition that to more fully understand the complex dynamics of neighborhoods and communities, we must effectively link the micro- and macro-level dimensions of community processes. As important as collective efficacy at the macro level has been shown to be, literature looking at factors shaping the individual-level experience is relatively scarce. Since the latent community attribute of collective efficacy is largely measured as a function of individual perceptions, understanding what affects the individual is vital, especially in light of within-neighborhood heterogeneity. In this study, I use insights from social disorganization theory, the systemic model to community attachment, and a life-course perspective in order to examine why age is associated with perceptions of collective efficacy. Utilizing Wave 1 L.A.FANS data (N=2,619), results show that age is positively associated with perceptions of collective efficacy, but that this relationship is indirect, with plans to move as the key mediator between age and perceptions of collective efficacy. Surprisingly, other factors linked to social disorganization theory and the systemic model of community attachment are not important for explaining the age relationship. Overall, this study takes the next step at identifying significant predictors of individual perceptions of collective efficacy both from the structural macro-level perspective and the individual micro-level perspective. Additionally, this analysis adds another urban context to the literature by analyzing Los Angeles County, a distinct area from those most looked at in previous studies.
College and Department
Family, Home, and Social Sciences; Sociology
BYU ScholarsArchive Citation
Jeffrey, Wesley B., "Age, Plans to Move, and Perceptions of Collective Efficacy" (2018). All Theses and Dissertations. 6921.
collective efficacy, social disorganization theory, systemic model of community attachment, age, life-course perspective