Alcohol and Marijuana Use Among College Students: Economic Complements or Substitutes?

39 Pages Posted: 29 Jul 2001 Last revised: 5 Oct 2011

See all articles by Jenny Williams

Jenny Williams

University of Melbourne - Department of Economics

Rosalie Liccardo Pacula

Health Economics, Finance and Organization, RAND Corporation; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Frank J. Chaloupka

University of Illinois at Chicago - Department of Economics; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Henry Wechsler

Harvard University - T.H. Chan School of Public Health

Date Written: July 2001

Abstract

College campuses have been cracking down on underage and binge drinking in light of recent highly publicized student deaths. Although there is evidence showing that stricter college alcohol policies have been effective at discouraging both drinking in general and frequent binge drinking on college campuses, recent evidence from the Harvard School Of Public Health College Alcohol Study (CAS) shows that marijuana use among college students rose 22 percent between 1993 and 1999. Are current policies aimed at reducing alcohol consumption inadvertently encouraging marijuana use? This paper begins to address this question by investigating the relationship between the demands for alcohol and marijuana for college students using data from the 1993, 1997 and 1999 CAS. We find that alcohol and marijuana are economic complements and that policies that increase the full price of alcohol decrease participation in marijuana use.

Suggested Citation

Williams, Jenny and Pacula, Rosalie Liccardo and Chaloupka, Frank J. and Wechsler, Henry, Alcohol and Marijuana Use Among College Students: Economic Complements or Substitutes? (July 2001). NBER Working Paper No. w8401. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=278034

Jenny Williams

University of Melbourne - Department of Economics ( email )

Melbourne, 3010
Australia

HOME PAGE: http://www.economics.unimelb.edu.au/staffprofile/jwilliams.htm

Rosalie Liccardo Pacula (Contact Author)

Health Economics, Finance and Organization, RAND Corporation ( email )

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National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

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Frank J. Chaloupka

University of Illinois at Chicago - Department of Economics ( email )

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National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

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Henry Wechsler

Harvard University - T.H. Chan School of Public Health ( email )

677 Huntington Avenue
Boston, MA MA 02115
United States

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