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Leaving school in an economic downturn and self-esteem across early and middle adulthood

Author

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  • Johanna Catherine Maclean

    () (Department of Economics, Temple University)

  • Terrence D. Hill

    () (Department of Sociology, The University of Utah)

Abstract

In this study we test whether leaving school in an economic downturn impacts self-esteem. Self-esteem is an important dimension of non-cognitive skill that economists have recently begun to examine. Previous work documents that leaving school in a downturn persistently depresses career outcomes, and career success is an important determinant of self-esteem. We model responses to the Rosenberg Self-esteem Scale as a function of the state unemployment rate at school-leaving. We address the potential endogeneity of time and location of school- leaving with instrumental variables. Our results suggest that leaving school in an economic downturn lowers self-esteem men but effects do not emerge until middle adulthood, and are particularly strong for white and high skill men.

Suggested Citation

  • Johanna Catherine Maclean & Terrence D. Hill, 2015. "Leaving school in an economic downturn and self-esteem across early and middle adulthood," DETU Working Papers 1505, Department of Economics, Temple University.
  • Handle: RePEc:tem:wpaper:1505
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    1. repec:bpj:bejeap:v:17:y:2017:i:2:p:37:n:5 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Johanna Catherine Maclean & Reginald Covington & Asia Sikora Kessler, 2016. "Labor Market Conditions At School-Leaving: Long-Run Effects On Marriage And Fertility," Contemporary Economic Policy, Western Economic Association International, vol. 34(1), pages 63-88, January.
    3. Antwi, Yaa Akosa & Maclean, J. Catherine, 2017. "State Health Insurance Mandates and Labor Market Outcomes: New Evidence on Old Questions," IZA Discussion Papers 10578, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).

    More about this item

    Keywords

    self-esteem; non-cognitive skills; school-leaving; macroeconomic fluctuations;

    JEL classification:

    • I1 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health
    • I12 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Health Behavior
    • J2 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor

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