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The Effect of Family Disruption on Children's Personality Development: Evidence from British Longitudinal Data

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  • Prevoo, Tyas

    () (Maastricht University)

  • ter Weel, Bas

    () (SEO Amsterdam)

Abstract

This research documents the effects of different forms of family disruptions – measured by separation, divorce and death – on personality development of British children included in the 1970 British Cohort Study. There are statistically significant correlations between family disruptions prior to the age of 16 and personality development in early childhood. Parental divorce has the largest negative effect on a child's personality development. Family disruptions have smaller effects on personality development when children are older and patterns differ by gender. The relationship between personality development and family disruption is partially driven by selection. Placebo regressions reveal significant correlations between family disruption and personality development before disruption. The omitted variable bias is mitigated by investigating mechanisms through which the selection operates.

Suggested Citation

  • Prevoo, Tyas & ter Weel, Bas, 2014. "The Effect of Family Disruption on Children's Personality Development: Evidence from British Longitudinal Data," IZA Discussion Papers 8712, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp8712
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    personality development; family disruption;

    JEL classification:

    • J12 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Marriage; Marital Dissolution; Family Structure
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity

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