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J Health Econ. 2006 Mar;25(2):214-33. Epub 2005 Jun 16.

Having the wrong friends? Peer effects in adolescent substance use.

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Lund University Centre for Health Economics (LUCHE), P.O. Box 705, 220 07 Lund, Sweden.


Swedish cross-sectional survey data on young individuals aged 12-18-year-old was used to analyse school-class based peer effects in binge drinking, smoking and illicit-drug use. Significant and positive peer effects were found for all three activities. By introducing school/grade fixed effects, the estimated peer effects were identified by variation in peer behaviour across school-classes within schools and grades, implying that estimates were not biased due to endogenous sorting of students across schools. Further, endogeneity bias due to bi-directionality of peer effects was found for binge drinking and smoking. Controlling for this source of endogeneity resulted in even stronger peer effects.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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