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Get High and Get Stupid: The Effect of Alcohol and Marijuana Use on Teen Sexual Behavior

  • Michael Grossman
  • Robert Kaestner
  • Sara Markowitz

Numerous studies have documented a strong correlation between substance use and teen sexual behavior, and this empirical relationship has given rise to a widespread belief that substance use causes teens to engage in risky sex. This causal link is often used by advocates to justify policies targeted at reducing substance use. Here, we argue that previous research has not produced sufficient evidence to substantiate a causal relationship between substance use and teen sexual behavior. Accordingly, we attempt to estimate causal effects using two complementary research approaches. Our findings suggest that substance use is not causally related to teen sexual behavior, although we cannot definitively rule out that possibility.

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File URL: http://www.nber.org/papers/w9216.pdf
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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 9216.

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Date of creation: Sep 2002
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Publication status: published as Michael Grossman & Robert Kaestner & Sara Markowitz, 2004. "Get High and Get Stupid: The Effect of Alcohol and Marijuana Use on Teen Sexual Behavior," Review of Economics of the Household, Springer, vol. 2(4), pages 413-441, 09.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:9216
Note: CH HE
Contact details of provider: Postal: National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Avenue Cambridge, MA 02138, U.S.A.
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Web page: http://www.nber.org
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  1. Joseph G. Altonji & Todd E. Elder & Christopher R. Taber, 2005. "Selection on Observed and Unobserved Variables: Assessing the Effectiveness of Catholic Schools," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 113(1), pages 151-184, February.
  2. V. Joseph Hotz & Susan Williams McElroy & Seth G. Sanders, 2005. "Teenage Childbearing and Its Life Cycle Consequences: Exploiting a Natural Experiment," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 40(3).
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