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Alcohol use and social interactions among adolescents in Sweden: Do peer effects exist within and/or between the majority population and immigrants?

Listed author(s):
  • Svensson, Mikael

Are adolescents who attend schools with a high level of alcohol use and binge drinking more likely to use alcohol and binge drink themselves? This paper analyzes peer effects in adolescent drinking based on a survey of 13,070 adolescents conducted in Sweden in 2005. The empirical analysis uses a multi-level logistic model to account for non-observable heterogeneity between the schools and the results show that attending a school with a high level of alcohol use and frequent binge drinking is a strong predictor of alcohol use and binge drinking for the individual. Hardly any significant interaction effects are detected, implying that peer influence is similar across different adolescent sub-groups. Looking at adolescents with different ethnic backgrounds, it is found that the drinking-pattern of the Swedish majority population has a significant effect on drinking by Swedish individuals and immigrants from Nordic and European countries, but no effect on drinking by immigrants from non-European countries.

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Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Social Science & Medicine.

Volume (Year): 70 (2010)
Issue (Month): 11 (June)
Pages: 1858-1864

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Handle: RePEc:eee:socmed:v:70:y:2010:i:11:p:1858-1864
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  1. Lundborg, Petter, 2006. "Having the wrong friends? Peer effects in adolescent substance use," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 25(2), pages 214-233, March.
  2. Edward C. Norton & Richard C. Lindrooth & Susan T. Ennett, 1998. "Controlling for the endogeneity of peer substance use on adolescent alcohol and tobacco use," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 7(5), pages 439-453.
  3. Clark, Andrew E. & Loheac, Youenn, 2007. ""It wasn't me, it was them!" Social influence in risky behavior by adolescents," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 26(4), pages 763-784, July.
  4. Charles F. Manski, 2000. "Economic Analysis of Social Interactions," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 14(3), pages 115-136, Summer.
  5. Nigel Rice & Matthew Sutton, 1998. "Drinking patterns within households: the estimation and interpretation of individual and group variables," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 7(8), pages 689-699.
  6. Alejandro Gaviria & Steven Raphael, 2001. "School-Based Peer Effects And Juvenile Behavior," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 83(2), pages 257-268, May.
  7. Becker, Gary S, 1992. "Habits, Addictions, and Traditions," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 45(3), pages 327-345.
  8. Lewit, Eugene M & Coate, Douglas & Grossman, Michael, 1981. "The Effects of Government Regulation on Teenage Smoking," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 24(3), pages 545-569, December.
  9. Michael Kremer & Dan Levy, 2008. "Peer Effects and Alcohol Use among College Students," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 22(3), pages 189-206, Summer.
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