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Education and Mortality: Evidence from a Social Experiment

Listed author(s):
  • Costas Meghir
  • Mårten Palme
  • Emilia Simeonova

We examine the effects of a major Swedish educational reform, that increased the years of compulsory schooling, on mortality and health. Using the gradual phase-in of the reform between 1949 and 1962 across municipalities, we estimate insignificant effects of the reform on mortality in the affected cohorts. From the confidence intervals we can rule out effects larger than 1-1.4 months of increased life expectancy. We find no significant impacts on mortality for individuals of low SES backgrounds, on deaths that are more likely to be affected by behavior, on hospitalizations, and consumption of prescribed drugs.

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File URL: http://www.nber.org/papers/w17932.pdf
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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 17932.

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Date of creation: Mar 2012
Publication status: Forthcoming at American Economic Journal: Applied Economics
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:17932
Note: CH ED HE
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  1. Holmlund, Helena, 2007. "A Researcher's Guide to the Swedish Compulsory School Reform," Working Paper Series 9/2007, Swedish Institute for Social Research.
  2. Philip Oreopoulos, 2006. "Estimating Average and Local Average Treatment Effects of Education when Compulsory Schooling Laws Really Matter," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(1), pages 152-175, March.
  3. Damon Clark & Heather Royer, 2010. "The Effect of Education on Adult Health and Mortality: Evidence from Britain," NBER Working Papers 16013, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Adriana Lleras-Muney, 2005. "The Relationship Between Education and Adult Mortality in the United States," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 72(1), pages 189-221.
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