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Social Interaction and Sickness Absence

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  • Assar Lindbeck
  • Marten Palme
  • Mats Persson

Abstract

Does the average level of sickness absence in a neighborhood affect individual sickness absence through social interaction on the neighborhood level? To answer this question, we consider evidence of local benefit-dependency cultures. Well-known methodological problems in this type of analysis include avoiding the so-called reflection problem and disentangling the causal effects of group behavior on individual behavior from the effects of individual sorting on neighborhoods. Based on data from Sweden, we adopt several different approaches to deal with these problems. The results are robust in the sense that regardless of approach and identifying assumptions, we obtain statistically significant estimates indicating group effects.

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File URL: http://www.cesifo-group.de/portal/page/portal/DocBase_Content/WP/WP-CESifo_Working_Papers/wp-cesifo-2008/wp-cesifo-2008-02/cesifo1_wp2215.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by CESifo Group Munich in its series CESifo Working Paper Series with number 2215.

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Date of creation: 2008
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Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_2215

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Keywords: sick-pay insurance; work absence; moral hazard; social norms;

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References

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  1. Ammermueller, Andreas & Pischke, Jörn-Steffen, 2006. "Peer Effects in European Primary Schools: Evidence from PIRLS," IZA Discussion Papers 2077, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  2. Anna Aizer & Janet Currie, 2002. "Networks or Neighborhoods? Correlations in the Use of Publicly-Funded Maternity Care in California," NBER Working Papers 9209, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Lindbeck, Assar, 1995. "Welfare State Disincentives with Endogenous Habits and Norms," Working Paper Series 441, Research Institute of Industrial Economics.
  4. Edward L. Glaeser & Bruce I. Sacerdote & Jose A. Scheinkman, 2002. "The Social Multiplier," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1968, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
  5. Esther Dufluo & Emmanuel Saez, 2003. "The role of information and social interactions in retirement plan decisions: Evidence from a randomized experiment," Framed Field Experiments 00141, The Field Experiments Website.
  6. Johansson, Per & Palme, Marten, 2005. "Moral hazard and sickness insurance," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 89(9-10), pages 1879-1890, September.
  7. Henrekson, Magnus & Persson, Mats, 2001. "The Effects on Sick Leave of Changes in the Sickness Insurance System," Seminar Papers 697, Stockholm University, Institute for International Economic Studies.
  8. Hesselius, Patrik & Johansson, Per & Larsson, Laura, 2005. "Monitoring sickness insurance claimants: evidence from a social experiment," Working Paper Series 2005:15, IFAU - Institute for Evaluation of Labour Market and Education Policy.
  9. Charles F. Manski, 2000. "Economic Analysis of Social Interactions," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 14(3), pages 115-136, Summer.
  10. Sendhil Mullainathan & Marianne Bertrand & Erzo F.P. Luttmer, 1998. "Network Effects and Welfare Cultures," Working papers 98-21, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  11. Lindbeck, Assar & Persson, Mats, 2006. "A Model of Income Insurance and Social Norms," Working Paper Series 659, Research Institute of Industrial Economics.
  12. Edward E. Glaeser & Bruce Sacerdote & Jose A. Scheinkman, 1995. "Crime and Social Interactions," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1738, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
  13. Esther Duflo & Emmanuel Saez, 2002. "The Role of Information and Social Interactions in Retirement Plan Decisions: Evidence from a Randomized Experiment," NBER Working Papers 8885, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  14. Andrea Ichino & Giovanni Maggi, 2000. "Work Environment And Individual Background: Explaining Regional Shirking Differentials In A Large Italian Firm," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 115(3), pages 1057-1090, August.
  15. Duflo, Esther & Saez, Emmanuel, 2002. "Participation and investment decisions in a retirement plan: the influence of colleagues' choices," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 85(1), pages 121-148, July.
  16. Lindbeck, Assar & Nyberg, Sten & Weibull, Jörgen W., 1997. "Social Norms and Economic Incentives in the Welfare State," Working Paper Series 476, Research Institute of Industrial Economics.
  17. Moulton, Brent R., 1986. "Random group effects and the precision of regression estimates," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 32(3), pages 385-397, August.
  18. Åslund, Olof & Fredriksson, Peter, 2005. "Ethnic enclaves and welfare cultures - quasi-experimental evidence," Working Paper Series 2005:8, IFAU - Institute for Evaluation of Labour Market and Education Policy.
  19. Manski, Charles F, 1993. "Identification of Endogenous Social Effects: The Reflection Problem," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 60(3), pages 531-42, July.
  20. Moffitt, Robert, 1983. "An Economic Model of Welfare Stigma," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 73(5), pages 1023-35, December.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Per Engstr�m & Per Johansson, 2012. "The medical doctors as gatekeepers in the sickness insurance?," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 44(28), pages 3615-3625, October.
  2. Lindbeck, Assar, 2008. "Prospects for the Welfare State," Seminar Papers 755, Stockholm University, Institute for International Economic Studies.
  3. Jönsson, Lisa & Palme, Mårten & Svensson, Ingemar, 2010. "Disability Insurance, Population Health and Employment in Sweden," Research Papers in Economics 2010:25, Stockholm University, Department of Economics.
  4. Rieck, Karsten Marshall Elseth & Vaage, Kjell, 2012. "Social Interactions At The Workplace: Exploring Sickness Absence Behavior," Working Papers in Economics 11/12, University of Bergen, Department of Economics.
  5. Stephen L. Ross, 2009. "Social Interactions within Cities: Neighborhood Environments and Peer Relationships," Working papers 2009-31, University of Connecticut, Department of Economics.
  6. Ethan Cohen-Cole & Giulio Zanella, 2008. "Welfare Stigma or Information Sharing? Decomposing Social Interactions Effects in Social Benefit Use," Department of Economics University of Siena 531, Department of Economics, University of Siena.
  7. Hesselius, Patrik & Johansson, Per & Vikström, Johan, 2008. "Monitoring and norms in sickness insurance: empirical evidence from a natural experiment," Working Paper Series 2008:8, IFAU - Institute for Evaluation of Labour Market and Education Policy.
  8. Aaberge, Rolf & Flood, Lennart, 2008. "Evaluation of an In-Work Tax Credit Reform in Sweden: Effects on Labor Supply and Welfare Participation of Single Mothers," IZA Discussion Papers 3736, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  9. Josephson, Malin & Karnehed, Nina & Lindahl, Erica & Persson, Helena, 2013. "Intergenerational transmission of long-term sick leave," Working Paper Series 2013:19, IFAU - Institute for Evaluation of Labour Market and Education Policy.

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