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Parental beliefs about returns to child health investments


Biroli, Pietro; Boneva, Teodora; Akash, Raja; Rauh, Christopher (2018). Parental beliefs about returns to child health investments. IZA Discussion Papers 11336, Institute of Labor Economics.

Abstract

Childhood obesity has adverse health and productivity consequences and poses negative externalities to health services. Its increase in recent decades can be traced back to unhealthy habits acquired in the household. We investigate whether parental beliefs play a role by eliciting beliefs about the returns to a recommended-calorie diet and regular exercise using hypothetical investment scenarios. We show that perceived returns are predictive of health investments and outcomes, and that less educated parents perceive the returns to health investments to be lower, thus contributing to the socioeconomic inequality in health outcomes and the intergenerational transmission of obesity.

Abstract

Childhood obesity has adverse health and productivity consequences and poses negative externalities to health services. Its increase in recent decades can be traced back to unhealthy habits acquired in the household. We investigate whether parental beliefs play a role by eliciting beliefs about the returns to a recommended-calorie diet and regular exercise using hypothetical investment scenarios. We show that perceived returns are predictive of health investments and outcomes, and that less educated parents perceive the returns to health investments to be lower, thus contributing to the socioeconomic inequality in health outcomes and the intergenerational transmission of obesity.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Working Paper
Communities & Collections:03 Faculty of Economics > Department of Economics
Dewey Decimal Classification:330 Economics
JEL Classification:D19, I10, I12, I14
Uncontrolled Keywords:Parental investments, health, beliefs, inequality, equality of opportunity, obesity
Language:English
Date:February 2018
Deposited On:28 Nov 2018 12:38
Last Modified:22 Feb 2019 11:36
Series Name:IZA Discussion Papers
Number of Pages:30
OA Status:Green
Official URL:https://www.iza.org/publications/dp/11336/parental-beliefs-about-returns-to-child-health-investments
Related URLs:https://www.iza.org/

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