Healthy Populations and Communities

Health behaviors and the social and physical environment exert strong influences on community health. RAND Health has examined many of these influences, addressing difficult questions such as:

  • Are cigarette displays in stores and those ubiquitous alcohol ads really influencing behavior?
  • How does legalizing marijuana affect consumption, tax revenue, and law enforcement?
  • In the U.S. and around the world, obesity has reached epidemic proportions. Why are people getting fatter and what can be done about it?
Read More About Healthy Populations and Communities

Featured Research

  • Mar 28, 2018

    How Calorie Labels on Menus Affect Consumers

    In traditional restaurant settings, displaying the calorie content on menus did not affect consumer satisfaction and reduced the amount of food ordered by 38 calories. This is a decrease of 7 percent, a notable difference considering the average American consumes one-third of his or her food calories away from home.

What's Hot Now

  • Journal Article

    Is Discrimination Related to Higher Rates of PTSD?

    Apr 12, 2018

    Discrimination may contribute to higher rates of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms experienced by African Americans.

  • Journal Article

    Who Uses Neighborhood Parks and Why?

    Mar 28, 2018

    Examining park use in two low-income neighborhoods, residents were more likely to visit larger parks with more amenities than the parks closest to their homes.

  • Journal Article

    Obesity May Be 'Socially Contagious'

    Jan 25, 2018

    People who move to a high-obesity area are more likely to become overweight or obese. This may be due, in part, to “social contagion.” Living in a community where obesity is more common may make inactivity, poor diet, and being overweight or obese more socially acceptable.

  • News Release

    New Supermarket in Low-Income Neighborhood May Trigger Economic and Health Improvements

    Dec 19, 2017

    Opening a new supermarket in a low-income neighborhood may improve residents' economic well-being and health, even if residents don't necessarily buy healthier food from the store.

Browse All RAND Research on Neighborhood Influences on Health