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How measures of perception from survey data lead to inconsistent regression results: evidence from adolescent and peer substance use

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  • Edward C. Norton

    (Department of Health Policy and Administration, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, USA)

  • Richard C. Lindrooth

    (Center for Health Industry Market Economics, Northwestern University, USA)

  • Susan T. Ennett

    (Department of Health Behavior and Health Education, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, USA)

Abstract

In studies of peer group behavior, the direct measure of peer group behavior is often not available, and so is replaced by perceptions from survey respondents. This study shows that regression estimators are inconsistent when the correctly measured independent variable of group behavior is replaced with perceived measures from survey respondents. The inconsistency is due to three sources: projection of own behavior onto the group, rescaling the marginal effect of the group, and simple random measurement error. We discuss why each effect may cause inconsistency, derive formulas for the probability limit to quantify their effects, and illustrate with three examples of adolescent smoking and drinking. Copyright © 2002 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Suggested Citation

  • Edward C. Norton & Richard C. Lindrooth & Susan T. Ennett, 2003. "How measures of perception from survey data lead to inconsistent regression results: evidence from adolescent and peer substance use," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 12(2), pages 139-148.
  • Handle: RePEc:wly:hlthec:v:12:y:2003:i:2:p:139-148
    DOI: 10.1002/hec.705
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Charles F. Manski, 1993. "Identification of Endogenous Social Effects: The Reflection Problem," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 60(3), pages 531-542.
    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. John Bound, 1991. "Self-Reported Versus Objective Measures of Health in Retirement Models," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 26(1), pages 106-138.
    4. Bound, John, et al, 1994. "Evidence on the Validity of Cross-Sectional and Longitudinal Labor Market Data," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 12(3), pages 345-368, July.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    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. Paolo Buonanno & Paolo Vanin, 2013. "Bowling alone, drinking together," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 44(3), pages 1635-1672, June.
    3. Robalino, Juan David, 2016. "Smoking Peer Effects among Adolescents: Are Popular Teens More Influential?," IZA Discussion Papers 9714, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    4. John Moriarty & Duncan McVicar & Kathryn Higgins, 2012. "Peer Effects in Adolescent Cannabis Use: It's the Friends, Stupid," Melbourne Institute Working Paper Series wp2012n27, Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research, The University of Melbourne.
    5. Javier Escobal & Sonia Laszlo, 2008. "Measurement Error in Access to Markets," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 70(2), pages 209-243, April.
    6. Jensen, Robert & Lleras-Muney, Adriana, 2012. "Does staying in school (and not working) prevent teen smoking and drinking?," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 31(4), pages 644-657.
    7. 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.
    8. Duncan McVicar & Arnold Polanski, 2014. "Peer Effects in UK Adolescent Substance Use: Never Mind the Classmates?," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 76(4), pages 589-604, August.
    9. Jeffrey E. Harris & Beatriz Lopez-Valcarcel, 2004. "Asymmetric Social Interaction in Economics: Cigarette Smoking Among Young People in the United States, 1992-1999," NBER Working Papers 10409, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    10. You, Kai, 2011. "Education, risk perceptions, and health behaviors," MPRA Paper 35535, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    11. Raabe, Katharina & Sekher, Madhushree & Birner, Regina, 2009. "The effects of political reservations for women on local governance and rural service provision:," IFPRI discussion papers 878, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).

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