Parents, Peers, Cigarette Taxes/Prices, and Adolescent Smoking
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The first chapter of the dissertation, “The Intergenerational Transmission of Smoking Behavior,” investigated the impact of parental smoking on adolescent smoking, the moderating effect of parental education and family income, the long-term effect of mother smoking, as well as the effect of the change of mother smoking on adolescent smoking. I developed an economic model to illustrate the relationship between parental smoking and adolescent smoking. Based on the hypothesis that wealthy and high-educated parents smoke less, the model predicted that this group of people would transmit less proportion of their smoking behavior to their adolescent offspring than would their counterparts. My findings showed that parental smoking had a significant impact on adolescent smoking decisions. Specifically, the probability of adolescent smoking would increase by about 5% if their parent was a current smoker. Family income was an important moderator between parental smoking and adolescent smoking. Wealthier parents transmitted less proportion of smoking behavior to their adolescent offspring. The second chapter of the dissertation, “The Influences of Parents and Peers on Adolescent Smoking: Implications for Anti-tobacco Programs”, investigated the differential effect of parental smoking and peer smoking across different subpopulations to lend support for the implementation of anti-tobacco programs. To address the potential endogeneity of the peer effect, a 2SLS model was employed. The analysis was stratified by neighborhood per capita income, gender, and ethnicity. My findings showed that both parental smoking and peer smoking had significant impact on adolescent smoking. Specifically, having one more friend smoking would raise the probability of adolescent smoking by 7.18 percentage point. Having one more parent who ever smoked would raise the probability of adolescent smoking by 3.49 percentage point in a two-parent household, and 6.97 percentage point in a single-parent household. Females were more likely to be influenced by parental smoking than were males. Among all races, Hispanic adolescents were more susceptible to peer smoking influences than were other races. Parental smoking had a greater impact on white and in low- and middle-income neighborhoods. Neither parental smoking nor peer smoking had a significant impact on black adolescents. Peer smoking demonstrated an inverse U-shaped relation with neighborhood per capita income. However, it did not differ significantly across neighborhoods. The third chapter of the dissertation, “Cigarette Price and Smoking Initiation and Cessation: Were Different Subpopulations Influenced to the Same Extent?” investigated the differential effect of cigarette prices on adolescent decisions to start, quit smoking, and make a quit attempt by family income and gender. Discrete time hazard models with and without state fixed effects and logistic regression method were implemented to conduct the analysis. My findings showed that contemporaneous cigarette price, past price, and price change had no significant effect on the starting and quitting hazard of adolescents regardless of whether state fixed effects were controlled for if a smoker was defined as smoking at least four times a month. Adolescents of a mother or father who ever smoked were more likely to initiate the smoking habit and less likely to quit smoking. Females were shown to be more likely to initiate smoking if their mother ever smoked, whereas males were more likely to initiate smoking if their father ever smoked. With respect to smoking cessation, females were less likely to quit smoking if their mother or father ever smoked. Adolescents who had higher educational attainment were less likely to start smoking and more likely to quit smoking. The results of smoking initiation were not sensitive to the definition of a smoker. However, the results of smoking cessation were sensitive to the definition of a smoker. When a smoker was defined as smoking nearly every day, the effect of past price on adolescent smoking cessation became significant, especially for low-income adolescents and females. Low-income and female adolescents were shown to have a greater elasticity of smoking cessation than their counterparts. The price elasticity of smoking cessation was 0.28 for low-income adolescents and almost zero for high-income adolescents, and was 0.17 for females and 0.06 for males, respectively. Higher cigarette price was associated with a greater probability of making a quit attempt in the last six months. More specifically, a 10% increase in cigarette price would lead to a 2% increase in the probability of a quit attempt. The stratified results by family income showed that high- and middle-income adolescents were more likely to make a quit attempt if cigarette prices went up.
Subjectparents, peers, cigarette taxes/prices, adolescent smoking, smoking initiation, smoking cessation, quit attempt, parental smoking, peer effect
Date available in INDIGO2017-11-01T15:16:52Z
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