Peer Effects on Childhood and Adolescent Obesity in China

46 Pages Posted: 11 Oct 2014

See all articles by Peng Nie

Peng Nie

University of Hohenheim

Alfonso Sousa-Poza

University of Hohenheim - Institute of Household and Consumer Economics; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Xiaobo He

School of Business, Shanghai University of International Business and Economics; University of Adelaide - Global Food Studies

Abstract

Using data from the China Health and Nutrition Survey (CHNS), this study analyzes peer effects on obesity in a sample of 3- to 18-year-old children and adolescents in China. Even after a rich set of covariates and unobserved individual heterogeneity are controlled for, it is evident that such peer effects do indeed exist. These effects are stronger in rural areas, among individuals at the upper end of the BMI distribution, and especially among females. All else being equal, female adolescents whose peers have a higher BMI are less likely to consider themselves overweight, suggesting that peer effects may be working through changed societal bodyweight norms.

Keywords: peer effects, children and adolescents, BMI, China

JEL Classification: I10, I15, J13, C14

Suggested Citation

Nie, Peng and Sousa-Poza, Alfonso and He, Xiaobo, Peer Effects on Childhood and Adolescent Obesity in China. IZA Discussion Paper No. 8528, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2508583

Peng Nie (Contact Author)

University of Hohenheim ( email )

Fruwirthstr. 48
Stuttgart, 70599
Germany

Alfonso Sousa-Poza

University of Hohenheim - Institute of Household and Consumer Economics ( email )

Fruwirthstrasse 48
Kavaliershaus 4 116
70599 Stuttgart
Germany
++49 (0)711/459-22863 (Phone)
++49 (0)711/459-23953 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.uni-hohenheim.de/hhoek/englisch/people/alfonsosousapoza/index.html

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

Xiaobo He

School of Business, Shanghai University of International Business and Economics ( email )

No. 1900, Wenxiang Road
Shanghai, 201620
China

University of Adelaide - Global Food Studies ( email )

10 Pulteney Street
Adelaide, South Australia 5005
Australia

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