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Some Students are Bigger than Others, Some Students’ Peers are Bigger than Other Students’ Peers

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  • Joan Gil
  • Toni Mora

Abstract

This paper analyses the extent to which peer influence on adolescent weight differs in a typical southern European country and in the United States, two geographical areas characterised by different economic, socio-cultural and environmental patterns. Our study is based on a survey of secondary school students containing a rich set of personal data and a wide range of school characteristics and parental backgrounds. After accounting for a large set of control factors and controlling for a combination of school- and neighbourhood-specific fixed effects, instrumental variable estimation and alternative definitions of peers, our results support a more powerful positive and significant effect of friends’ mean BMI on adolescent weight than that reported in previous US-based research.

Suggested Citation

  • Joan Gil & Toni Mora, 2010. "Some Students are Bigger than Others, Some Students’ Peers are Bigger than Other Students’ Peers," Working Papers 2010-18, FEDEA.
  • Handle: RePEc:fda:fdaddt:2010-18
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    File URL: http://documentos.fedea.net/pubs/dt/2010/dt-2010-18.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Joan Costa-Font & Joan Gil, "undated". "Social interactions and the contemporaneous determinants of individuals’ weight," Working Papers 2004-19, FEDEA.
    2. Antoni Calvó-Armengol & Eleonora Patacchini & Yves Zenou, 2009. "Peer Effects and Social Networks in Education," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 76(4), pages 1239-1267.
    3. Chou, Shin-Yi & Grossman, Michael & Saffer, Henry, 2004. "An economic analysis of adult obesity: results from the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 23(3), pages 565-587, May.
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