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The role of marriage in the causal pathway from economic conditions early in life to mortality

  • van den Berg, Gerard J.


    (IFAU - Institute for Labour Market Policy Evaluation)

  • Gupta, Sumedha


    (Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis)

This paper analyzes the interplay between early-life conditions and marital status, as determinants of adult mortality. We use individual data from Dutch registers (years 1815-2000), combined with business cycle conditions in childhood as indicators of earlylife conditions. The empirical analysis estimates bivariate duration models of marriage and mortality, allowing for unobserved heterogeneity and causal effects. Results show that conditions around birth and school ages are important for marriage and mortality. Men typically enjoy a protective effect of marriage on mortality, whereas women suffer during childbearing ages. Having been born under favorable economic conditions reduces female mortality during childbearing ages.

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Paper provided by IFAU - Institute for Evaluation of Labour Market and Education Policy in its series Working Paper Series with number 2011:23.

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Length: 44 pages
Date of creation: 30 Nov 2011
Date of revision:
Publication status: Forthcoming as van den Berg, Gerard J. and Sumedha Gupta, 'The role of marriage in the causal pathway from economic conditions early in life to mortality' in Journal of Health Economics, 2014.
Handle: RePEc:hhs:ifauwp:2011_023
Contact details of provider: Postal: IFAU, P O Box 513, SE-751 20 Uppsala, Sweden
Phone: (+46) 18 - 471 70 70
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  1. van den Berg, Gerard J. & Lundborg, Petter & Nystedt, Paul & Rooth, Dan-Olof, 2011. "Critical periods during childhood and adolescence: a study of adult height among immigrant siblings," Working Paper Series 2011:5, IFAU - Institute for Evaluation of Labour Market and Education Policy.
  2. Gerard J. van den Berg & Maarten Lindeboom & France Portrait, 2007. "Conjugal Bereavement Effects on Health and Mortality at Advanced Ages," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 07-009/3, Tinbergen Institute.
  3. Francine D. Blau & Lawrence M. Kahn & Jane Waldfogel, 2000. "Understanding Young Women's Marriage Decisions: The Role of Labor and Marriage Market Conditions," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 53(4), pages 624-647, July.
  4. Jaap H. Abbring & Gerard J. van den Berg, 2003. "The Nonparametric Identification of Treatment Effects in Duration Models," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 71(5), pages 1491-1517, 09.
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  6. Thomas Philipson & Darius Lakdawalla, 1998. "The Rise in Old Age Longevity and the Market for Long-Term Care," University of Chicago - George G. Stigler Center for Study of Economy and State 146, Chicago - Center for Study of Economy and State.
  7. Tommy Bengtsson & Martin Dribe, 2006. "Deliberate control in a natural fertility population: Southern Sweden, 1766–1864," Demography, Springer, vol. 43(4), pages 727-746, November.
  8. Martin Dribe & Christer Lundh, 2010. "Marriage choices and social reproduction," Demographic Research, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany, vol. 22(14), pages 347-382, March.
  9. Modin, Bitte, 2003. "Born out of wedlock and never married--it breaks a man's heart," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 57(3), pages 487-501, August.
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  13. Sharon Maccini & Dean Yang, 2009. "Under the Weather: Health, Schooling, and Economic Consequences of Early-Life Rainfall," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 99(3), pages 1006-26, June.
  14. Josh Angrist, 2002. "How Do Sex Ratios Affect Marriage and Labor Markets? Evidence from America's Second Generation," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 117(3), pages 997-1038.
  15. Carl Vogel & Aloysius Siow & Loren Brandt, 2010. "Large Shocks and Small Changes in the Marriage Market for Famine Born Cohorts in China," 2010 Meeting Papers 264, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  16. Fogel, Robert William, 1993. "New findings on secular trends in nutrition and mortality: Some implications for population theory," Handbook of Population and Family Economics, in: M. R. Rosenzweig & Stark, O. (ed.), Handbook of Population and Family Economics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 9, pages 433-481 Elsevier.
  17. Wolleswinkel-van den Bosch, Judith H. & van Poppel, Frans W. A. & Tabeau, Ewa & Mackenbach, Johan P., 1998. "Mortality decline in The Netherlands in the period 1850-1992: A turning point analysis," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 47(4), pages 429-443, August.
  18. Modin, Bitte & Koupil, Ilona & Vågerö, Denny, 2009. "The impact of early twentieth century illegitimacy across three generations. Longevity and intergenerational health correlates," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 68(9), pages 1633-1640, May.
  19. Norton, Edward C., 2000. "Long-term care," Handbook of Health Economics, in: A. J. Culyer & J. P. Newhouse (ed.), Handbook of Health Economics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 17, pages 955-994 Elsevier.
  20. Gardner, Jonathan & Oswald, Andrew, 2004. "How is mortality affected by money, marriage, and stress?," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 23(6), pages 1181-1207, November.
  21. Lee Lillard & Constantijn Panis, 1996. "Marital status and mortality: The role of health," Demography, Springer, vol. 33(3), pages 313-327, August.
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