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Searching for Peer Group Effects: A Test of the Contagion Hypothesis

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Author Info

  • Laura M. Argys

    (University of Colorado Denver)

  • Daniel I. Rees

    (University of Colorado Denver)

Abstract

Using information on birth and kindergarten start dates to generate an exogenous measure of the relative age of a student's peer group, we find that, controlling for age, females with older peers are more likely to use substances than females with younger peers. Because there is no reason to suspect that birth and kindergarten start dates should be correlated with the choice of school, the socioeconomic status of a child's peers, or neighborhood unobservables, we view our results with regard to females as providing support for the idea that peer behavior can be contagious. Copyright by the President and Fellows of Harvard College and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

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File URL: http://www.mitpressjournals.org/doi/pdf/10.1162/rest.90.3.442
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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by MIT Press in its journal The Review of Economics and Statistics.

Volume (Year): 90 (2008)
Issue (Month): 3 (August)
Pages: 442-458

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Handle: RePEc:tpr:restat:v:90:y:2008:i:3:p:442-458

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Web page: http://mitpress.mit.edu/journals/

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Web: http://mitpress.mit.edu/journal-home.tcl?issn=00346535

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Cited by:
  1. Susan Averett & Laura Argys & Daniel Rees, 2011. "Older siblings and adolescent risky behavior: does parenting play a role?," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 24(3), pages 957-978, July.
  2. David Card & Laura Giuliano, 2011. "Peer Effects and Multiple Equilibria in the Risky Behavior of Friends," NBER Working Papers 17088, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Fabio Landini & Natalia Montinari & Paolo Pin & Marco Piovesan, 2014. "Friendship Network in the Classroom: Parents Bias and Peer Effects," Discussion Papers 14-06, University of Copenhagen. Department of Economics.
  4. Howard, Larry L., 2011. "Does food insecurity at home affect non-cognitive performance at school? A longitudinal analysis of elementary student classroom behavior," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 30(1), pages 157-176, February.
  5. Mary A. Burke & Tim R. Sass, 2013. "Classroom Peer Effects and Student Achievement," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 31(1), pages 51 - 82.
  6. Stephen L. Ross, 2009. "Social Interactions within Cities: Neighborhood Environments and Peer Relationships," Working papers 2009-31, University of Connecticut, Department of Economics.
  7. Webbink, Dinand & Martin, Nicholas G. & Visscher, Peter M., 2010. "Does education reduce the probability of being overweight?," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 29(1), pages 29-38, January.

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