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Illicit drug use and labour market achievement: evidence from the UK

  • Ziggy MacDonald
  • Stephen Pudney

This study, using data from the British Crime Survey (BCS), examines the effect of drug use on occupational achievement. It starts by attempting to overcome the identification problem that results from the limited set of drug use questions presented in the BCS. Taking this into account, and allowing for the endogeneity of drug use in equations for unemployment and labour market outcomes, that a mild positive association with 'soft' drugs and occupational achievement is observed that diminishes with age. This relationship holds for males but not for females. In contrast, it is also found that past use of 'hard' drugs significantly increases the likelihood of current unemployment, although it appears to be unrelated to occupational success, conditional on achieving employment.

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File URL: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/00036840010014454
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Article provided by Taylor & Francis Journals in its journal Applied Economics.

Volume (Year): 33 (2001)
Issue (Month): 13 ()
Pages: 1655-1668

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Handle: RePEc:taf:applec:v:33:y:2001:i:13:p:1655-1668
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  1. A. J. Culyer, 1973. "I. Should Social Policy Concern Itself with Drug "Abuse"?," Public Finance Review, , vol. 1(4), pages 449-456, October.
  2. Charles A. Register & Donald R. Williams, 1992. "Labor market effects of marijuana and cocaine use among young men," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 45(3), pages 435-451, April.
  3. Robert Kaestner, 1994. "New Estimates of the Effect of Marijuana and Cocaine Use on Wages," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 47(3), pages 454-470, April.
  4. Robert Kaestner, 1994. "The Effect of Illicit Drug Use on the Labor Supply of Young Adults," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 29(1), pages 126-155.
  5. Andrew M. Gill & Robert J. Michaels, 1992. "Does drug use lower wages?," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 45(3), pages 419-434, April.
  6. Ziggy MacDonald, . "The Demand for Illicit Drugs in the UK: Survey Evidence," Discussion Papers in Economics 97/5, Department of Economics, University of Leicester.
  7. Andrew M. Gill & Robert J. Michaels, 1991. "The Determinants Of Illegal Drug Use," Contemporary Economic Policy, Western Economic Association International, vol. 9(3), pages 93-105, 07.
  8. Becker, Gary S & Murphy, Kevin M, 1988. "A Theory of Rational Addiction," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 96(4), pages 675-700, August.
  9. Simon M. Burgess & Carol Propper, 1998. "Early health-related behaviours and their impact on later life chances: evidence from the US," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 7(5), pages 381-399.
  10. Robert Kaestner, 1990. "The Effect of Illicit Drug Use on the Wages of Young Adults," NBER Working Papers 3535, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Ziggy MacDonald, . "The Demand for Illicit Drugs in the UK: Survey Evidence," Discussion Papers in Public Sector Economics 97/5, Department of Economics, University of Leicester.
  12. Sickles, Robin & Taubman, Paul, 1991. "Who Uses Illegal Drugs?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 81(2), pages 248-51, May.
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