Self-efficacy: Perceived self-efficacy refers to beliefs that individuals hold about their capability to carry out action in a way that will influence the events that affect their lives. Modified definition: Bandura (1994) Self-efficacy beliefs determine how people feel, think, motivate themselves and behave. This is demonstrated in how much effort people will expend and how… Read More


Self-help: In the context of health promotion, actions taken by lay persons (i.e. non-health professionals) to mobilize the necessary resources to promote, maintain or restore the health of individuals or communities. Reference: modified definition Although self-help is usually understood to mean action taken by individuals or communities which will directly benefit those taking the action,… Read More

Settings for health

Settings for health: The place or social context in which people engage in daily activities in which environmental, organizational and personal factors interact to affect health and wellbeing. Reference: new definition A setting is also where people actively use and shape the environment and thus create or solve problems relating to health. Settings can normally… Read More

Social capital

Social capital: Social capital represents the degree of social cohesion which exists in communities. It refers to the processes between people which establish networks, norms, and social trust, and facilitate co-ordination and co-operation for mutual benefit. Reference: new definition Social capital is created from the myriad of everyday interactions between people, and is embodied in… Read More

Social marketing

Social marketing: Social marketing is the application of commercial marketing technologies to the analysis, planning, execution and evaluation of programs designed to influence the behaviour of target audiences in order to improve the welfare of individuals and society. Modified definition: Andreasen (1995). Social marketing strategies are concerned firstly with the needs, preferences and social and… Read More

Social networks

Social networks: Social relations and links between individuals which may provide access to or mobilization of social support for health. Reference: modified definition A stable society is far more likely to have established social networks which provide access to social support. De-stabilizing influences such as high unemployment, re-housing schemes, and rapid urbanization can lead to… Read More

Social responsibility for health

Social responsibility for health: Social responsibility for health is reflected by the actions of decision makers in both public and private sector to pursue policies and practices which promote and protect health. Reference: The Jakarta Declaration on Leading Health Promotion into the 21st Century. WHO, Geneva, 1997 The policies and practices pursued by the public… Read More

Social support

Social support: That assistance available to individuals and groups from within communities which can provide a buffer against adverse life events and living conditions, and can provide a positive resource for enhancing the quality of life. Reference: modified definition Social support may include emotional support, information sharing and the provision of material resources and services.… Read More

Supportive environments for health

Supportive environments for health: Supportive environments for health offer people protection from threats to health, and enable people to expand their capabilities and develop self-reliance in health. They encompass where people live, their local community, their home, where they work and play, including people’s access to resources for health, and opportunities for empowerment. Reference: adapted… Read More

Sustainable development

Sustainable development: Sustainable development is defined as development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs (WCED 1987). It incorporates many elements, and all sectors, including the health sector, which must contribute to achieve it. Reference: Our common future: Report of the World Commission… Read More