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Genetic Markers as Instrumental Variables:An Application to Child Fat Mass and Academic Achievement

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  • Stephanie von Hinke Kessler Scholder
  • George Davey Smith
  • Debbie A. Lawlor
  • Carol Propper
  • Frank Windmeijer

    ()

Abstract

The use of genetic markers as instrumental variables (IV) is receiving increasing attention from economists. This paper examines the conditions that need to be met for genetic variants to be used as instruments. We combine the IV literature with that from genetic epidemiology, with an application to child adiposity (fat mass, determined by a dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry (DXA) scan) and academic performance. OLS results indicate that leaner children perform slightly better in school tests compared to their more adipose counterparts, but the IV findings show no evidence that fat mass affects academic outcomes.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Department of Economics, University of Bristol, UK in its series The Centre for Market and Public Organisation with number 10/229.

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Length: 23 pages
Date of creation: Jan 2010
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:bri:cmpowp:10/229

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Related research

Keywords: Instrumental variables; Mendelian randomization; Genetic variant; Potential outcomes; Academic performance; Educational attainment; Adiposity; Fat mass; Body Mass Index; ALSPAC;

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References

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  1. Kaestner, Robert & Grossman, Michael, 2009. "Effects of weight on children's educational achievement," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 28(6), pages 651-661, December.
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  8. Anne Case & Christina Paxson, 2006. "Stature and status: Height, ability, and labor market outcomes," Working Papers 232, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
  9. Mobius, Markus & Rosenblat, Tanya, 2010. "Why Beauty Matters," Staff General Research Papers 32112, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
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Blog mentions

As found by EconAcademics.org, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
  1. The Effect of Child Weight on Academic Performance: Evidence using Genetic Markers
    by Kevin Denny in Geary Behaviour Centre on 2009-07-29 14:56:00
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Cited by:
  1. Jan-Emmanuel De Neve & Nicholas A. Christakis & James H. Fowler & Bruno S. Frey, 2010. "Genes, Economics, and Happiness," CESifo Working Paper Series 2946, CESifo Group Munich.
  2. Eide, Eric R. & Showalter, Mark H., 2011. "Estimating the relation between health and education: What do we know and what do we need to know?," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 30(5), pages 778-791, October.
  3. Böckerman, Petri & Bryson, Alex & Viinikainen, Jutta & Hakulinen, Christian & Pulkki-Raback, Laura & Raitakari, Olli, 2014. "Biomarkers and Long-term Labour Market Outcomes: The Case of Creatine," IZA Discussion Papers 8029, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).

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