Journal Article

Emergence Model of social and human capital and its application to the Healthy Municipalities project in Northeast Brazil

Motoyuki Yuasa, Ronice Franco de Sá, Sheila Pincovsky and Norio Shimanouchi

in Health Promotion International

Volume 22, issue 4, pages 292-298
Published in print December 2007 | ISSN: 0957-4824
Published online September 2007 | e-ISSN: 1460-2245 | DOI:
Emergence Model of social and human capital and its application to the Healthy Municipalities project in Northeast Brazil

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We developed the Emergence Model and introduced the concept of social and human capital into designing and evaluating the Healthy Cities/Municipalities project to ensure health promotion infrastructure. This model hypothesizes that through the interaction and utilization of the other forms of capital, namely financial, physical and natural, the emergence of collective action takes place in the community or municipal setting. Subsequently, collective action may influence health and quality of life determinants. Once health and quality of life improvements are achieved, the enhancement of the social, human and other capital may be brought about through positive feedback, and successive collective action is thereby facilitated. According to the model, practitioners and policy makers of the Healthy Cities/Municipalities project should primarily strengthen social and human capital.

The model is currently applied to designing the Healthy Municipalities project implemented in rural areas of Northeast Brazil, where infrastructure and a supportive environment to facilitate collective action for control over health and health determinant have been considerably frail due to geographical, historical, social and cultural reasons. Various interventions have been conducted in the scope of the project to enhance social and human capital on three levels, namely the state, municipality and community. Through the capacity development of health promoters, obliging volunteers and so on, the project attempts to create the social mechanism that enables people to build healthy public policies through inter- and trans-sectoral collaboration as well as to address and resolve day-to-day issues using their potentialities.

Keywords: Healthy Cities/Municipalities; social capital; human capital

Journal Article.  3600 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Public Health and Epidemiology

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