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In: Youth as/in Crisis
In: Youth as/in Crisis
In: Reel Big Bullies
In: Youth as/in Crisis
In: Youth as/in Crisis
Part 1 Being Human, Being Bilingual—A Human Right to Language
In: A Humanizing Dual Language Immersion Education
In: The Road to Independence
In: Pathways to Belonging


This chapter sets out the research evidence that highlights the social nature of human beings. It first describes psychological theory about a positive sense of self-esteem as the foundation of one’s wellbeing. It then shows how one’s sense self-esteem is in turn based on one’s feeling of being accepted and esteemed by others. This human sensitivity to inclusion and exclusion by others is elaborated in ‘the belongingness hypothesis’. An account is then given of social neuroscience experiments using fMRI showing how people are highly sensitive to being left out even in simple computer games, and how social pain is registered in the brain in a similar fashion to physical pain. Similarly, research shows how human wellbeing is enhanced while the impact of stress and illness is reduced through connections with others. In conclusion it is suggested that a community that aims to enhance the wellbeing of its members needs to promote inclusive structures and processes.

In: Perspectives on Wellbeing


A sense of belonging or connection to others has been seen as a fundamental need by social scientists across time. This connection to others leads to positive outcomes in almost every domain and sport is no exception to this rule. In the world of team sports, connecting to others has a huge impact on both performance and satisfaction and is essential for success. The following paper will discuss: the roots of the concept of belonging; the application of belonging to sport; a potential framework for understanding individual and environmental factors of belonging; implications of the impact of belonging for athletes.

In: Journal of Belonging and Human Connection