Non validating childhood
The contemporaneous neighborhood-health literature has shifted away from using solely census-based demographic and compositional variables, towards using subjective measures of the neighborhood social environment to operationalize neighborhood environment. It follows that life course neighborhood studies would benefit from this shift as well.The purpose of this manuscript is to test the validity and reliability of measuring a respondents childhood neighborhood context retrospectively with subjective reports of neighborhood social environment elicited in adulthood.We compare these subjective reports to objective neighborhood measures of childhood context, derived from residential histories and geocoded to historical census data, including to formally test for measurement recall bias. Our larger goal is to identify more efficient methods to operationalize the early life neighborhood context than those from prospective cohort studies begun in childhood, or from administrative record linkage, and thereby provide tools to advance the social and life course epidemiology literatures to incorporate context of both place and time.- Funding: Funding provided by National Institutes of Health (NIH), National Institute of Child Health and Development (NICHD) grant R01HD058510.The funders had no role in study design, data collection and analysis, decision to publish, or preparation of the manuscript.Indeed, although context refers to both place and time,  the health literature with respect to context typically operationalizes either place or time.
id=10.1371/0124635&type=printable April Where We Used to Live: Validating Retrospective Measures of Childhood Neighborhood Context for Life Course Epidemiologic Studies Theresa L. Misra 0 2 3 0 1 University of Minnesota School of Public Health, Division of Epidemiology & Community Health , Minneapolis , Minnesota, United States of America, 2 Wayne State University School of Medicine, Department of Family Medicine and Public Health Sciences , Detroit, Michigan , United States of America 1 10.3886/E31393V1), Principal Investigator: Dawn Misra.Associations with objective variables were strongest for neighborhood disorder (rhos=.40), as opposed to with social control or victimization.Associations between subjective neighborhood context in childhood versus adulthood were moderate and stronger for residentially-stable populations.Associations with objective variables were strongest for neighborhood disorder (rhos = .40), as opposed to with social control or victimization.
These results provide evidence that retrospective reports of subjective neighborhood context may be a cost-effective, valid, and reliable method to operationalize early life context for health studies.In the Life-course Influences on Fetal Environments (LIFE) Study, a retrospective cohort study among Black women in Southfield, Michigan (71% response rate), we tested the validity and reliability of retrospectively-reported survey-based subjective measures of early life neighborhood context(N=693).