A component of the ecological systems theory developed by Urie Bronfenbrenner, the term macrosystem describes the cultural context in which a person lives. Ecological systems theory proposes there are five environmental systems in which an individual will interact with over the course of their lifetime: microsystem, mesosystem, exosystem, macrosystem, and chronosystem.
The macrosystem is the larger culture as a whole and includes socioeconomic status, wealth, poverty, and ethnicity. This further includes children, their parents and school, and their parent's workplace as part of a larger cultural context. As culture evolves and changes over time, the macrosystem changes as well making it unique for successive generations.