It wasn't me, It was them! A Study of Social Influence in Risky Behaviour by Adolescents
Institutional information does not seem to prevent drug experimentation. We use Add Health panel data (1994-1996) to examine risky behaviour by adolescents (the consumption of tobacco, alcohol and marijuana). We find that such behaviours are correlated with the (lagged) behaviour of three peer groups: others in the same school year; others one school year higher than the individual in the same school; and the individual's friends. Peer group effects are strongest within sexes. However girls do also follow boys, while boys are only little affected by their female peers. We also find evidence of non-linearities in peer group effects.
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