is considered today as one of the most important characteristics of democracy and good
governance and there is an increasing interest in analyzing its relationship with health.
According to Kawachi (2000), social capital variables (trust, norms of reciprocity,
membership in voluntary associations) "explain a significant portion of the
cross-sectional variations of in mortality rates across the states of the U.S"(p.2).
He also affirms the documented relationship of social capital and crime prevention.
Summary of Research on
Social Capital and Health by Ichiro Kawachi in The World Bank's Email Discussion Group on
Social Capital (2000)