Youth risk-taking behavior in Brazil : drug use and teenage pregnancy
Using an extensive survey that addresses risk factors faced by the population in the shantytowns (favelas) of Fortaleza, Brazil, the aim of this paper is to study risk-taking behavior by youth, focusing on drug use and teenage pregnancy. The paper analyzes the impact of factors such as exposure to mass media, the existence of support networks, self-esteem, and the occurrence of violence at home and in the neighborhood, on the probability of risk-taking behavior. A bivariate probit model is estimated. The findings indicate that reliance on support networks and exposure to mass media are associated with a lower probability of either type of risk behavior. Living in a violent home increases drug consumption. Race does not have a significant impact on either type of behavior.
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