Does Schooling Affect Health Behavior? Evidence from Educational Expansion in Western Germany
During the postwar period German states pursued policies to increase the share of young Germans obtaining a university entrance diploma (Abitur) by building more academic track schools, but the timing of educational expansion differed between states. This creates exogenous variation in the availability of higher education, which allows estimating the causal effect of education on health behaviors. Using the number of academic track schools in a state as an instrumental variable for years of schooling, we investigate the causal effect of schooling on health behavior such as smoking and related outcomes such as obesity. We find large negative effects of education on smoking. These effects can mostly be attributed to reductions in starting rates rather than increases in quitting rates. We find no causal effect of education on reduced overweight and obesity.
|Date of creation:||21 Aug 2009|
|Date of revision:|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: Munich Center for the Economics of Aging (MEA) at the Max Planck Institute for Social Law and Social Policy, Amalienstraße 33, 80799 München, Germany|
Web page: http://www.mea.mpisoc.mpg.de/
|Order Information:|| Email: |
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:mea:meawpa:09186. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Henning Frankenberger)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.