Polarisation and Health

20 Pages Posted: 6 Oct 2008

See all articles by Cristina Blanco Pérez

Cristina Blanco Pérez

Autonomous University of Barcelona

Xavier Ramos

Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona; Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA)


This paper examines the effect of income polarisation on individual health. We argue that polarisation captures much better the social tension and conflict that underlie some of the pathways linking income disparities and individual health, and which have been traditionally proxied by inequality. We test our premises with panel data for Spain. Results show that polarisation has a detrimental effect on health. We also find that the way the relevant population subgroups are defined is important: polarisation is only significant if measured between education-age groups for each region. Regional polarisation is not significant. Our results are obtained conditional on a comprehensive set of controls, including absolute and relative income.

Keywords: polarisation, health, fixed-effects ordered logit model, conflict, psychosocial stress, social capital

JEL Classification: D31, I1

Suggested Citation

Blanco Pérez, Cristina and Ramos, Xavier, Polarisation and Health. IZA Discussion Paper No. 3727. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1278928 or http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.0042-7092.2007.00700.x

Cristina Blanco Pérez (Contact Author)

Autonomous University of Barcelona ( email )

Plaça Cívica
Cerdañola del Valles
Barcelona, Barcelona 08193

Xavier Ramos

Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona ( email )

Dept. Economia Aplicada
Campus UAB
Bellaterra, Barcelona 08193

Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA)

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072

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