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An Exploration of the Dynamic Relationship between Health and Cognitive Development in Adolescence


  • Robert A. Shakotko
  • Linda N. Edwards
  • Michael Grossman


This paper is an empirical exploration of the dynamic relationship between health and cognitive development in a longitudinal data set compiled from two nationally representative cross-sections of children. Our results indicate that there is feedback both from health to cognitive development and from cognitive development to health, but the latter of these relationships is stronger. They also indicate that estimates of family background effects taken from the dynamic model -- which can be assumed to be less influenced by genetic factors are smaller than their cross-sectional counterparts, but some still remain statistically significant. The first finding calls attention to the existence of a continuing inter-action between health and cognitive development over the life cycle. The second finding suggests that nurture "matters" in cognitive development and health outcomes.

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  • Robert A. Shakotko & Linda N. Edwards & Michael Grossman, 1980. "An Exploration of the Dynamic Relationship between Health and Cognitive Development in Adolescence," NBER Working Papers 0454, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:0454
    Note: HE

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Michael Grossman, 1976. "The Correlation between Health and Schooling," NBER Chapters,in: Household Production and Consumption, pages 147-224 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Linda N. Edwards & Michael Grossman, 1979. "Adolescent Health, Family Background, and Preventive Medical Care," NBER Working Papers 0398, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Griliches, Zvi, 1977. "Estimating the Returns to Schooling: Some Econometric Problems," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 45(1), pages 1-22, January.
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    Cited by:

    1. Gabriella Conti & James J. Heckman & Sergio Urzua, 2010. "Early endowments, education, and health," Working Papers 2011-001, Human Capital and Economic Opportunity Working Group.
    2. Robert Kaestner & Michael Grossman & Benjamin Yarnoff, 2011. "Effects of Weight on Adolescent Educational Attainment," NBER Chapters,in: Economic Aspects of Obesity, pages 283-313 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. David S. Salkever, 1982. "Children's Health Problems: Implications for Parental Labor Supply and Earnings," NBER Chapters,in: Economic Aspects of Health, pages 221-252 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    4. Grossman, Michael, 1982. "Government and Health Outcomes," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 72(2), pages 191-195, May.
    5. Alexander J. Cowell, 2006. "The relationship between education and health behavior: some empirical evidence," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 15(2), pages 125-146.
    6. Grossman, Michael, 2006. "Education and Nonmarket Outcomes," Handbook of the Economics of Education, Elsevier.
    7. Jangraiz KHAN & Naeem Ur Rehman KHATTAK, 2016. "Does Health Matter for Economic Growth?," Journal of Economic and Social Thought, KSP Journals, vol. 3(1), pages 166-170, March.
    8. Kaestner, Robert & Grossman, Michael, 2009. "Effects of weight on children's educational achievement," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 28(6), pages 651-661, December.
    9. B. Wolfe & S. Zuvekas, "undated". "Nonmarket outcomes of schooling," Institute for Research on Poverty Discussion Papers 1065-95, University of Wisconsin Institute for Research on Poverty.
    10. Robert Kaestner & Hope Corman, 1995. "The Impact of Child Health and Family Inputs on Child Cognitive Develop-ment," NBER Working Papers 5257, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    11. Lien Nguyen & Unto Häkkinen & Matti Knuuttila & Marjo-Riitta Järvelin, 2008. "Should we brush twice a day? Determinants of dental health among young adults in Finland," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 17(2), pages 267-286.
    12. Barbara L. Wolfe & Robert H. Haveman, 2002. "Social and nonmarket benefits from education in an advanced economy," Conference Series ; [Proceedings], Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, vol. 47(Jun), pages 97-142.

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