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Why Parents Worry: Initiation into Cannabis Use by Youth and their Educational Attainment

  • Jan C. van Ours
  • Jenny Williams

In this paper we use individual level data from the Australian National Drug Strategy Household Survey to study the relationship between initiation into cannabis use and educational attainment. Using instrumental variable estimation and bivariate duration analysis we find that those initiating into cannabis use early in life are much more likely to dropout of school compared to those who start later on. Moreover, we find that the reduction in years of schooling depends on the age at which initiation occurs, and that it is larger for females than males.

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Paper provided by The University of Melbourne in its series Department of Economics - Working Papers Series with number 1013.

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Length: 49 pages
Date of creation: 2007
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:mlb:wpaper:1013
Contact details of provider: Postal: Department of Economics, The University of Melbourne, 4th Floor, FBE Building, Level 4, 111 Barry Street. Victoria, 3010, Australia
Phone: +61 3 8344 5355
Fax: +61 3 8344 6899
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  1. Pinka Chatterji, 2003. "Illicit Drug Use and Educational Attainment," NBER Working Papers 10045, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. van Ours, J.C., 2001. "Is Cannabis a Stepping Stone for Cocaine?," Discussion Paper 2001-98, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
  3. Donald S. Kenkel & Dean R. Lillard & Alan D. Mathios, 2004. "Accounting for misclassification error in retrospective smoking data," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 13(10), pages 1031-1044.
  4. Jenny Williams & Lisa Powell & Henry Wechsler, 2003. "Does alcohol consumption reduce human capital accumulation? Evidence from the College Alcohol Study," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 35(10), pages 1227-1239.
  5. Duarte, Rosa & Escario, Jose Julian & Molina, Jose Alberto, 2006. "Marijuana consumption and school failure among Spanish students," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 25(5), pages 472-481, October.
  6. van Ours, Jan C & Williams, Jenny, 2005. "Cannabis Prices and Dynamics of Cannabis Use," CEPR Discussion Papers 4991, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  7. Thomas S. Dee & William N. Evans, 2003. "Teen Drinking and Educational Attainment: Evidence from Two-Sample Instrumental Variables Estimates," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 21(1), pages 178-209, January.
  8. Anne Bretteville-Jensen, 2006. "Drug Demand – Initiation, Continuation and Quitting," De Economist, Springer, vol. 154(4), pages 491-516, December.
  9. Berg, Gerard J. van den & Klaauw, Bas van der & Ours, Jan C. van, 1998. "Punitive sanctions and the transition rate from welfare to work," Serie Research Memoranda 0033, VU University Amsterdam, Faculty of Economics, Business Administration and Econometrics.
  10. Jeremy W. Bray & Gary A. Zarkin & Chris Ringwalt & Junfeng Qi, 2000. "The relationship between marijuana initiation and dropping out of high school," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 9(1), pages 9-18.
  11. 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.
  12. Douglas Staiger & James H. Stock, 1997. "Instrumental Variables Regression with Weak Instruments," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 65(3), pages 557-586, May.
  13. Steven F. Koch & Kerry Anne McGeary, 2005. "The Effect of Youth Alcohol Initiation on High School Completion," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 43(4), pages 750-765, October.
  14. Tetsuji Yamada & Michael Kendix & Tadashi Yamada, 1993. "The Impact of Alcohol Consumption and Marijuana Use on High School Graduation," NBER Working Papers 4497, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  15. Christine Godfrey, 2006. "Evidence-Based Illicit Drug Policy: The Potential Contribution of Economic Evaluation Techniques," De Economist, Springer, vol. 154(4), pages 563-580, December.
  16. Beenstock, Michael & Rahav, Giora, 2002. "Testing Gateway Theory: do cigarette prices affect illicit drug use?," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 21(4), pages 679-698, July.
  17. Charles Register & Donald Williams & Paul Grimes, 2001. "Adolescent Drug Use and Educational Attainment," Education Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 9(1), pages 1-18.
  18. Rosalie Liccardo Pacula & Karen E. Ross & Jeanne Ringel, 2003. "Does Marijuana Use Impair Human Capital Formation?," NBER Working Papers 9963, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  19. Stephen Pudney, 2004. "Keeping off the grass? An econometric model of cannabis consumption in Britain," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 19(4), pages 435-453.
  20. Cook, Philip J. & Moore, Michael J., 1993. "Drinking and schooling," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 12(4), pages 411-429, December.
  21. van Ours, Jan C. & Williams, Jenny, 2009. "Why parents worry: Initiation into cannabis use by youth and their educational attainment," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 28(1), pages 132-142, January.
  22. van Ours, J.C. & Williams, J., 2007. "Why Parents Worry : Initiation into Cannabis use by Youth and their Educational Attainment," Discussion Paper 2007-60, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
  23. van Ours, J.C., 2003. "Is cannabis a stepping stone for cocaine?," Other publications TiSEM c1213d1c-a542-4627-938c-7, Tilburg University, School of Economics and Management.
  24. Jaap H. Abbring & Gerard J. Berg & Jan C. Ours, 2005. "The Effect of Unemployment Insurance Sanctions on the Transition Rate from Unemployment to Employment," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 115(505), pages 602-630, 07.
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