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Health and education expansion

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  • James, Jonathan

Abstract

In this paper I exploit a reform that expanded UK post-compulsory education during the 1980s and 1990s to examine the effect of education on health. The expansion resulted in a rapid increase in education over the whole education distribution. I find evidence that education had an effect in reducing body mass index, waist circumference and weight. For other health measures (self-reported general health, long term or limiting illnesses), blood pressure and health behaviours (smoking and drinking) there were small to no improvements. There is suggestive evidence that the mechanisms driving these results are improvements in labour market and social status.

Suggested Citation

  • James, Jonathan, 2015. "Health and education expansion," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 49(C), pages 193-215.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:ecoedu:v:49:y:2015:i:c:p:193-215
    DOI: 10.1016/j.econedurev.2015.10.003
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. James, Jonathan & Vujić, Sunčica, 2019. "From high school to the high chair: Education and fertility timing," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 69(C), pages 1-24.
    2. Hamad, Rita & Elser, Holly & Tran, Duy C. & Rehkopf, David H. & Goodman, Steven N., 2018. "How and why studies disagree about the effects of education on health: A systematic review and meta-analysis of studies of compulsory schooling laws," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 212(C), pages 168-178.
    3. Janke, Katharina & Johnston, David W. & Propper, Carol & Shields, Michael A., 2020. "The causal effect of education on chronic health conditions in the UK," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 70(C).
    4. Meyer, Andrew G., 2017. "The impact of education on political ideology: Evidence from European compulsory education reforms," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 56(C), pages 9-23.
    5. Janke, Katharina & Johnston, David W. & Propper, Carol & Shields, Michael A., 2018. "The Causal Effect of Education on Chronic Health Conditions," IZA Discussion Papers 11353, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    6. Gray, Daniel & Montagnoli, Alberto & Moro, Mirko, 2021. "Does education improve financial behaviors? Quasi-experimental evidence from Britain," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 183(C), pages 481-507.
    7. Titus J. Galama & Adriana Lleras-Muney & Hans van Kippersluis, 2018. "The Effect of Education on Health and Mortality: A Review of Experimental and Quasi-Experimental Evidence," NBER Working Papers 24225, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    8. Avendano, Mauricio & de Coulon, Augustin & Nafilyan, Vahé, 2020. "Does longer compulsory schooling affect mental health? Evidence from a British reform," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 183(C).

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Health; Education;

    JEL classification:

    • I20 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - General
    • I10 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - General
    • J10 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - General
    • J20 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - General

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