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The effect of college education on mortality

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  • Buckles, Kasey
  • Hagemann, Andreas
  • Malamud, Ofer
  • Morrill, Melinda
  • Wozniak, Abigail

Abstract

We exploit exogenous variation in years of completed college induced by draft-avoidance behavior during the Vietnam War to examine the impact of college on adult mortality. Our estimates imply that increasing college attainment from the level of the state at the 25th percentile of the education distribution to that of the state at the 75th percentile would decrease cumulative mortality for cohorts in our sample by 8 to 10 percent relative to the mean. Most of the reduction in mortality is from deaths due to cancer and heart disease. We also explore potential mechanisms, including differential earnings and health insurance.

Suggested Citation

  • Buckles, Kasey & Hagemann, Andreas & Malamud, Ofer & Morrill, Melinda & Wozniak, Abigail, 2016. "The effect of college education on mortality," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(C), pages 99-114.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jhecon:v:50:y:2016:i:c:p:99-114
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jhealeco.2016.08.002
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Jared C. Carbone & Snorre Kverndokk, 2017. "Individual Investments in Education and Health: Policy Responses and Interactions," Advances in Health Economics and Health Services Research,in: Human Capital and Health Behavior, volume 25, pages 33-83 Emerald Publishing Ltd.
    2. Guy Lacroix & François Laliberté-Auger & Pierre-Carl Michaud & Daniel Parent, 2018. "The Effect of College Education on Health and Mortality: Evidence from Canada," Cahiers de recherche 1813, Chaire de recherche Industrielle Alliance sur les enjeux économiques des changements démographiques.
    3. repec:eee:labeco:v:47:y:2017:i:c:p:48-63 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. Evan Taylor, 2017. "The Impact of College Education on Old-Age Mortality: A Study of Marginal Treatment Effects," Working Papers 17-30, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
    5. Ofer Malamud & Andreea Mitrut & Cristian Pop-Eleches, 2018. "The Effect of Education on Mortality and Health: Evidence from a Schooling Expansion in Romania," NBER Working Papers 24341, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. Guy Lacroix & François Laliberté-Auger & Pierre-Carl Michaud & Daniel Parent, 2018. "The Effect of College Education on Health and Mortality: Evidence from Canada," CIRANO Working Papers 2018s-41, CIRANO.
    7. Zhuang Hao & Benjamin W. Cowan, 2017. "The Effects of Graduation Requirements on Risky Health Behaviors of High School Students," NBER Working Papers 23803, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    8. 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.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Education; Mortality; Instrumental variables; Vietnam draft; College;

    JEL classification:

    • I1 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health
    • I2 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education
    • J1 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics

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