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Cross Country Estimates of Peer Effects in Adolescent Smoking Using IV and School Fixed Effects

Author

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  • Duncan McVicar

    (Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research, The University of Melbourne)

Abstract

This paper presents micro-econometric evidence on peer effects in adolescent smoking between classmates aged 15/16 years across 13 European countries. Both instrumental variables and school fixed effects are used for identification. Omitting school fixed effects, as in some existing IV studies of peer effects, is shown to lead to substantial overestimates consistent with endogenous sorting into schools. When fixed effects are included, estimated peer effects range from 0.04 to 0.34 depending on the instrument set. The preferred estimate uses the smoking behaviour of peers’ older siblings to instrument for peer smoking behaviour and suggests a statistically insignificant peer effect of 0.16. This estimate is robust to restricting the sample by dropping schools that non-randomly sort pupils into classes. Ultimately, we cannot rule out zero peer effects in smoking between adolescent classmates in Europe.

Suggested Citation

  • Duncan McVicar, 2012. "Cross Country Estimates of Peer Effects in Adolescent Smoking Using IV and School Fixed Effects," Melbourne Institute Working Paper Series wp2012n07, Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research, The University of Melbourne.
  • Handle: RePEc:iae:iaewps:wp2012n07
    as

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    File URL: http://melbourneinstitute.unimelb.edu.au/downloads/working_paper_series/wp2012n07.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Lundborg, Petter, 2006. "Having the wrong friends? Peer effects in adolescent substance use," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 25(2), pages 214-233, March.
    2. Griesbach, Dawn & Amos, Amanda & Currie, Candace, 2003. "Adolescent smoking and family structure in Europe," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 56(1), pages 41-52, January.
    3. Adele Atkinson & Simon Burgess & Paul Gregg & Carol Propper & Steven Proud, 2008. "The Impact of Classroom Peer Groups on Pupil GCSE Results," The Centre for Market and Public Organisation 08/187, Department of Economics, University of Bristol, UK.
    4. Jason M. Fletcher, 2010. "Social interactions and smoking: evidence using multiple student cohorts, instrumental variables, and school fixed effects," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 19(4), pages 466-484.
    5. 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.
    6. Charles F. Manski, 2000. "Economic Analysis of Social Interactions," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 14(3), pages 115-136, Summer.
    7. Alejandro Gaviria & Steven Raphael, 2001. "School-Based Peer Effects And Juvenile Behavior," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 83(2), pages 257-268, May.
    8. John Micklewright & Sylke V. Schnepf & Pedro N. Silva, 2010. "Peer effects and measurement error: the impact of sampling variation in school survey data," DoQSS Working Papers 10-13, Department of Quantitative Social Science - UCL Institute of Education, University College London.
    9. Powell, Lisa M. & Tauras, John A. & Ross, Hana, 2005. "The importance of peer effects, cigarette prices and tobacco control policies for youth smoking behavior," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 24(5), pages 950-968, September.
    10. McVicar, Duncan, 2011. "Estimates of peer effects in adolescent smoking across twenty six European Countries," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 73(8), pages 1186-1193.
    11. repec:aph:ajpbhl:2004:94:1:96-102_7 is not listed on IDEAS
    12. Michael P. Murray, 2006. "Avoiding Invalid Instruments and Coping with Weak Instruments," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 20(4), pages 111-132, Fall.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. John Moriarty & Duncan McVicar & Kathryn Higgins, 2012. "Peer Effects in Adolescent Cannabis Use: It's the Friends, Stupid," Melbourne Institute Working Paper Series wp2012n27, Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research, The University of Melbourne.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Peer effects; social interactions; smoking; tobacco; adolescents; fixed effects; endogenous sorting;

    JEL classification:

    • I00 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - General - - - General
    • Z13 - Other Special Topics - - Cultural Economics - - - Economic Sociology; Economic Anthropology; Language; Social and Economic Stratification

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