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Dynamic Aspects of Teenage Friendships and Educational Attainment

  • Patacchini, Eleonora
  • Rainone, Edoardo
  • Zenou, Yves

We study peer effects in education. We first develop a network model that predicts a relationship between own education and peers’ education as measured by direct links in the social network. We then test this relationship using the four waves of the AddHealth data, looking at the impact of school friends nominated in the first wave in 1994-1995 on own educational outcome reported in the fourth wave in 2007-2008. We find that there are strong and persistent peer effects in education since a standard deviation increase in peers’ education attainment translates into roughly a 10 percent increase of a standard deviation in the individual’s education attainment (roughly 3.5 more months of education). We also find that peer effects are in fact significant only for adolescents who were friends in grades 10-12 but not for those who were friends in grades 7-9. This might indicate that social norms are important in educational choice since the individual’s choice of college seems to be influenced by that of friends in the two last years of high school.

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Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 8223.

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Date of creation: Feb 2011
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Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:8223
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  1. 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.
  2. Liu, Xiaodong & Patacchini, Eleonora & Zenou, Yves & Lee, Lung-Fei, 2011. "Criminal Networks: Who is the Key Player?," Research Papers in Economics 2011:7, Stockholm University, Department of Economics.
  3. Jeffrey S. Zax & Daniel I. Rees, 2002. "IQ, Academic Performance, Environment, and Earnings," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 84(4), pages 600-616, November.
  4. Bramoullé, Yann & Djebbari, Habiba & Fortin, Bernard, 2007. "Identification of Peer Effects through Social Networks," IZA Discussion Papers 2652, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  5. Caroline Hoxby, 2000. "Peer Effects in the Classroom: Learning from Gender and Race Variation," NBER Working Papers 7867, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Coralio Ballester & Antoni Calvó-Armengol & Yves Zenou, 2004. "Who's Who in Networks. Wanted: The Key Player," Working Papers 178, Barcelona Graduate School of Economics.
  7. M. Daniele Paserman & Eric Gould & Victor Lavy, 2010. "Sixty Years after the Magic Carpet Ride: The Long-Run Effect of the Early Childhood Environment on Social and Economic Outcomes," Boston University - Department of Economics - Working Papers Series WP2010-045, Boston University - Department of Economics.
  8. de Bartolome, Charles A M, 1990. "Equilibrium and Inefficiency in a Community Model with Peer Group Effects," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 98(1), pages 110-33, February.
  9. Giacomo De Giorgi & Michele Pellizzari & Silvia Redaelli, 2010. "Identification of Social Interactions through Partially Overlapping Peer Groups," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 2(2), pages 241-75, April.
  10. Datcher, Linda P, 1982. "Effects of Community and Family Background on Achievement," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 64(1), pages 32-41, February.
  11. Patacchini, Eleonora & Zenou, Yves, 2004. "Intergenerational Education Transmission: Neighborhood Quality and/or Parents' Involvement?," Working Paper Series 631, Research Institute of Industrial Economics.
  12. David Card & Jesse Rothstein, 2006. "Racial Segregation and the Black-White Test Score Gap," Working Papers 12a, Princeton University, Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Education Research Section..
  13. Eleonora Patacchini & Yves Zenou, 2012. "Juvenile Delinquency and Conformism," Journal of Law, Economics and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 28(1), pages 1-31.
  14. Dominique Goux & Eric Maurin, 2006. "Close Neighbours Matter: Neighbourhood Effects on Early Performance at School," CEE Discussion Papers 0068, Centre for the Economics of Education, LSE.
  15. Cohen-Cole, Ethan, 2006. "Multiple groups identification in the linear-in-means model," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 92(2), pages 157-162, August.
  16. Calvó-Armengol, Antoni & Patacchini, Eleonora & Zenou, Yves, 2008. "Peer Effects and Social Networks in Education," IZA Discussion Papers 3859, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  17. Lee, Lung-fei, 2007. "Identification and estimation of econometric models with group interactions, contextual factors and fixed effects," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 140(2), pages 333-374, October.
  18. Liu, Xiaodong & Lee, Lung-fei, 2010. "GMM estimation of social interaction models with centrality," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 159(1), pages 99-115, November.
  19. Lee, Lung-Fei, 2002. "Consistency And Efficiency Of Least Squares Estimation For Mixed Regressive, Spatial Autoregressive Models," Econometric Theory, Cambridge University Press, vol. 18(02), pages 252-277, April.
  20. Epple, Dennis & Romano, Richard E, 1998. "Competition between Private and Public Schools, Vouchers, and Peer-Group Effects," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(1), pages 33-62, March.
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