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Education, Information and Smoking Decisions: Evidence from Smoking Histories in the United States, 1940–2000

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Author Info

  • Damien de Walque

Abstract

This paper tests the hypothesis that education improves health and increases life expectancy. The analysis of smoking histories shows that after 1950, when information about the dangers of tobacco started to diffuse, the prevalence of smoking declined earlier and most dramatically for college graduates. I construct panels based on smoking histories in an attempt to isolate the causal effect of smoking from the influence of time-invariant unobservable characteristics. The results suggest that, at least among women, college education has a negative effect on smoking prevalence and that more educated individuals responded faster to the diffusion of information on the dangers of smoking.

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File URL: http://jhr.uwpress.org/cgi/reprint/45/3/682
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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by University of Wisconsin Press in its journal Journal of Human Resources.

Volume (Year): 45 (2010)
Issue (Month): 3 ()
Pages:

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Handle: RePEc:uwp:jhriss:v:45:y:2010:iii:1:p682-717

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Web page: http://jhr.uwpress.org/

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Cited by:
  1. David Frisvold & Ezra Golberstein, 2013. "The Effect of School Quality on Black-White Health Differences: Evidence From Segregated Southern Schools," Demography, Springer, vol. 50(6), pages 1989-2012, December.
  2. Shah Danyal & Bichaka Fayissa & Jong-Sung Lee, 2011. "Impact of Education on Lifestyles: What Do Longitudinal Data Show?," Working Papers 201102, Middle Tennessee State University, Department of Economics and Finance.
  3. Pierre-André Chiappori & Sonia Oreffice & Climent Quintana-Domeque, 2011. "Matching with a Handicap: The Case of Smoking in the Marriage Market," Working Papers 2011-017, Human Capital and Economic Opportunity Working Group.
  4. Cowan, Benjamin W., 2011. "Forward-thinking teens: The effects of college costs on adolescent risky behavior," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 30(5), pages 813-825, October.
  5. Maralani, Vida, 2013. "Educational inequalities in smoking: The role of initiation versus quitting," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 84(C), pages 129-137.
  6. Lange, Fabian, 2011. "The role of education in complex health decisions: Evidence from cancer screening," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 30(1), pages 43-54, January.
  7. Massimiliano Bratti & Mendola, M., 2013. "GINI DP 63: Parental Health and Child Schooling!," GINI Discussion Papers 63, AIAS, Amsterdam Institute for Advanced Labour Studies.

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