Ethnic disadvantage and schizophrenia

William Eaton, Glynn Harrison

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective: To review and interpret epidemiologic research on ethnic disadvantage and schizophrenia. Method: A search of the research literature was conducted. Results: Seventeen population-based studies were reported in the United Kingdom and the Netherlands from 1967 to 1997. The studies report high incidence rates for immigrants whose position in society is disadvantaged, than majority-group native-born, with a range of relative incidence from 1.7 to 13.2. It is proposed that the developmental task for formulating the life plan challenges the young adult's executive function abilities, which may be weaker in individuals vulnerable to schizophrenia. Formulating the life plan may be made more difficult by the position in society of disadvantaged ethnic minorities, raising the risk for schizophrenia. Conclusion: Further research on executive function, and the developmental challenge of formulating the life plan, might provide insights into the etiology of schizophrenia, as well as suggest avenues for prevention.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)38-43
Number of pages6
JournalActa Psychiatrica Scandinavica, Supplement
Issue number407
StatePublished - Dec 1 2000


  • African-Caribbean
  • Ethnic disadvantage
  • Schizophrenia

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


Dive into the research topics of 'Ethnic disadvantage and schizophrenia'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this