Neighborhood or School? Influences on Alcohol Consumption and Heavy Episodic Drinking Among Urban Adolescents


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Journal of Youth and Adolescence;


Springer Verlag

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Little is known about the relative influences of neighborhood and school on the alcohol socialization process. Survey data from the Young in Oslo Study (N = 10,038, mean age 17.1 years, 52% girls) were used to investigate the details of such influences, using cross-classified multilevel models. School and neighborhood contexts were equally important for ordinary alcohol use; however, neighborhood influences were mainly explained by individual and family factors, whereas peer-based sociocultural processes played a key role in explaining school effects. Neither context had much impact on heavy episodic drinking. The study suggests that “privileged” youth may be at risk of high alcohol consumption. Parental influences and peer-based sociocultural aspects of the school milieu should be considered in prevention efforts.




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