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Everybody Needs Good Neighbours? Evidence from Students’ Outcomes in England

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  • Stephen Gibbons
  • Olmo Silva
  • Felix Weinhardt

Abstract

We estimate the effect of neighbours' characteristics and prior achievements on teenage students' educational and behavioural outcomes using census data on several cohorts of secondary school students in England. Our research design is based on changes in neighbourhood composition caused explicitly by residential migration amongst students in our dataset. The longitudinal nature and detail of the data allows us to control for student unobserved characteristics, neighbourhood fixed effects and time trends, school-by-cohort fixed effects, as well as students' observable attributes and prior attainments. The institutional setting also allows us to distinguish between neighbours who attend the same or different schools, and thus examine interactions between school and neighbourhood peers. Overall, our results provide evidence that peers in the neighbourhood have no effect on test scores, but have a small effect on behavioural outcomes, such as attitudes towards schooling and anti-social behaviour.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Royal Economic Society in its journal The Economic Journal.

Volume (Year): 123 (2013)
Issue (Month): (09)
Pages: 831-874

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Handle: RePEc:ecj:econjl:v:123:y:2013:i::p:831-874

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References

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  1. Olof Aslund & Per-Anders Edin & Peter Fredriksson & Hans Gronqvist, 2009. "Peers, neighborhoods and immigrant student achievement - evidence from a placement policy," CReAM Discussion Paper Series 0928, Centre for Research and Analysis of Migration (CReAM), Department of Economics, University College London.
  2. Anne Bolster & Simon Burgess & Ron Johnston & Kelvyn Jones & Carol Propper & Rebecca Sarker, 2007. "Neighbourhoods, households and income dynamics: a semi-parametric investigation of neighbourhood effects," Journal of Economic Geography, Oxford University Press, vol. 7(1), pages 1-38, January.
  3. Edin, P.-A. & Fredriksson, P. & Aslund, O., 2000. "Evidence from a Natural Experiment," Papers 2000:21, Uppsala - Working Paper Series.
  4. David J. Harding & Lisa Gennetian & Christopher Winship & Lisa Sanbonmatsu & Jeffrey R. Kling, 2010. "Unpacking Neighborhood Influences on Education Outcomes: Setting the Stage for Future Research," NBER Working Papers 16055, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Stephen Gibbons & Shqiponja Telhaj, 2007. "Mobility and school disruption," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 19384, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  6. Victor Lavy & Olmo Silva & Felix Weinhardt, 2012. "The Good, the Bad, and the Average: Evidence on Ability Peer Effects in Schools," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 30(2), pages 367 - 414.
  7. Eric Gould & Victor Lavy & Daniele M. Paserman, 2004. "Immigrating to Opportunity: Estimating The Effect of School Quality Using a Natural Experiment On Ethiopians in Israel," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 119(2), pages 489-526, May.
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  9. Felix Weinhardt, 2010. "Moving into the projects: social housing neighbourhoods and school performance in England," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 33612, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  10. Rebecca Allen & Simon Burgess & Tomas Key, 2010. "Choosing secondary school by moving house: school quality and the formation of neighbourhoods," DoQSS Working Papers 10-21, Department of Quantitative Social Science - Institute of Education, University of London.
  11. Daniel Aaronson, . "Using Sibling Data to Estimate the Impact of Neighborhoods on Children's Educational Outcomes," IPR working papers 95-20, Institute for Policy Resarch at Northwestern University.
  12. Victor Lavy & Analia Schlosser, 2011. "Mechanisms and Impacts of Gender Peer Effects at School," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 3(2), pages 1-33, April.
  13. Gibbons, Stephen & Machin, Stephen & Silva, Olmo, 2013. "Valuing school quality using boundary discontinuities," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 75(C), pages 15-28.
  14. Eric D. Gould & Victor Lavy & M. Daniele Paserman, 2009. "Sixty Years after the Magic Carpet Ride: The Long-Run Effect of the Early Childhood Environment on Social and Economic Outcomes," NBER Working Papers 14884, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  15. Cheshire, Paul & Sheppard, Stephen, 1995. "On the Price of Land and the Value of Amenities," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 62(246), pages 247-67, May.
  16. Caroline Hoxby, 2000. "Peer Effects in the Classroom: Learning from Gender and Race Variation," NBER Working Papers 7867, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  17. Victor Lavy & M. Daniele Paserman & Analia Schlosser, 2008. "Inside the Black of Box of Ability Peer Effects: Evidence from Variation in the Proportion of Low Achievers in the Classroom," NBER Working Papers 14415, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  18. Lisa Sanbonmatsu & Jeffrey R. Kling & Greg J. Duncan & Jeanne Brooks-Gunn, 2006. "Neighborhoods and Academic Achievement: Results from the Moving to Opportunity Experiment," NBER Working Papers 11909, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  19. John F. Kain & John M. Quigley, 1975. "Housing Markets and Racial Discrimination: A Microeconomic Analysis," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number kain75-1, July.
  20. Steve Gibbons & Shqiponja Telhaj, 2008. "Peers and Achievement in Englands Secondary Schools," SERC Discussion Papers 0001, Spatial Economics Research Centre, LSE.
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Cited by:
  1. Kenzo Asahi, 2014. "The Impact of Better School Accessibility on Student outcomes," SERC Discussion Papers 0156, Spatial Economics Research Centre, LSE.

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