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An analysis of life‐course smoking behavior in China

Author

Listed:
  • Don Kenkel
  • Dean R. Lillard
  • Feng Liu

Abstract

With a total population of more than 1.3 billion people where more than 31% of adults smoke, China has become the world's largest producer and consumer of cigarettes. We adopt a life-course perspective to study the economics of smoking behavior in China. We use data from the China Health and Nutrition Survey (CHNS) to follow individuals over their whole lives and to analyze their decisions to both start and stop smoking. We extend the small but growing body of economic research on smoking in China. Our life‐course approach emphasizes that current smoking participation reflects a decision to start and a series of past decisions to not quit. We explore how the determinants of smoking initiation differ from the determinants of smoking cessation. We find results, consistent with some previous empirical evidence, that Chinese smoking is not strongly related to the price of cigarettes. Based on our results, we offer some speculative hypotheses that, we hope, might guide future research on the economics of smoking in China. It seems especially useful to compare the broad patterns we document with the experiences of other countries. Copyright (C) 2009 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Suggested Citation

  • Don Kenkel & Dean R. Lillard & Feng Liu, 2009. "An analysis of life‐course smoking behavior in China," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 18(S2), pages 147-156, July.
  • Handle: RePEc:wly:hlthec:v:18:y:2009:i:s2:p:s147-s156
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    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1002/hec.1507
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. DeCicca, Philip & Kenkel, Don & Mathios, Alan, 2008. "Cigarette taxes and the transition from youth to adult smoking: Smoking initiation, cessation, and participation," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(4), pages 904-917, July.
    2. BISHOP, John A. & Liu, Haiyong & Meng, Qi, 2007. "Are Chinese smokers sensitive to price?," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 18(2), pages 113-121.
    3. Lance, Peter M. & Akin, John S. & Dow, William H. & Loh, Chung-Ping, 2004. "Is cigarette smoking in poorer nations highly sensitive to price?: Evidence from Russia and China," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 23(1), pages 173-189, January.
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    Cited by:

    1. Winnie Yip & Adam Wagstaff & William C. Hsiao, 2009. "Economic analysis of China's health care system: turning a new page," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 18(S2), pages 3-6, July.
    2. Quirmbach, Diana & Gerry, Christopher J., 2016. "Gender, education and Russia’s tobacco epidemic: A life-course approach," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 160(C), pages 54-66.
    3. Ricardo Goncalves & Peter J. Simmons & Yuanyuan Xie, 2017. "Rebel with(out) a cause? Inter-generational smoking dependence in Chinese households," Discussion Papers 17/20, Department of Economics, University of York.
    4. Lin, Wanchuan & Sloan, Frank, 2015. "Risk perceptions and smoking decisions of adult Chinese men," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 39(C), pages 60-73.
    5. Christopoulou, Rebekka & Lillard, Dean R., 2015. "Is smoking behavior culturally determined? Evidence from British immigrants," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 110(C), pages 78-90.
    6. Strauss, John & Lei, Xiaoyan & Park, Albert & Shen, Yan & Smith, James P. & Yang, Zhe & Zhao, Yaohui, 2010. "Health Outcomes and Socio-Economic Status among the Elderly in China: Evidence from the CHARLS Pilot," IZA Discussion Papers 5152, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    7. Kuiyun Zhi & Jin Huang & Suo Deng & Yongjin Chen & Michael G. Vaughn & Zhengmin Qian, 2016. "Decreased smoking initiation among male youths in China: an urban–rural comparison," International Journal of Public Health, Springer;Swiss School of Public Health (SSPH+), vol. 61(4), pages 417-425, May.
    8. Siqi Zheng & Matthew E. Kahn, 2013. "Understanding China's Urban Pollution Dynamics," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 51(3), pages 731-772, September.
    9. Albert Hermalin & Deborah Lowry, 2012. "The Decline of Smoking Among Female Birth Cohorts in China in the 20th Century: A Case of Arrested Diffusion?," Population Research and Policy Review, Springer;Southern Demographic Association (SDA), vol. 31(4), pages 545-570, August.
    10. repec:ran:wpaper:774 is not listed on IDEAS

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