Smog in Our Brains: Gender Differences in the Impact of Exposure to Air Pollution on Cognitive Performance

44 Pages Posted: 26 Mar 2017

See all articles by Xi Chen

Xi Chen

Department of Health Policy and Management; Yale University - Department of Economics; Yale University - Yale Institution for Social and Policy Studies; IZA

Xiaobo Zhang

International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI)

Xin Zhang

Beijing Normal University (BNU) - School of Statistics

Abstract

While there is a large body of literature on the negative health effects of air pollution, there is much less written about its effects on cognitive performance for the whole population. This paper studies the effects of contemporaneous and cumulative exposure to air pollution on cognitive performance based on a nationally representative survey in China. By merging a longitudinal sample at the individual level with local air-quality data according to the exact dates and counties of interviews, we find that contemporaneous and cumulative exposure to air pollution impedes both verbal and math scores of survey subjects. Interestingly, the negative effect is stronger for men than for women. Specifically, the gender difference is more salient among the old and less educated in both verbal and math tests.

Keywords: cognitive performance, air pollution, gender difference

JEL Classification: I24, Q53, Q51, J16

Suggested Citation

Chen, Xi and Zhang, Xiaobo and Zhang, Xin, Smog in Our Brains: Gender Differences in the Impact of Exposure to Air Pollution on Cognitive Performance. IZA Discussion Paper No. 10628. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2940618

Xi Chen (Contact Author)

Department of Health Policy and Management ( email )

60 College St
New Haven, CT 06520
United States

Yale University - Department of Economics ( email )

28 Hillhouse Ave
New Haven, CT 06520-8268
United States

Yale University - Yale Institution for Social and Policy Studies ( email )

77 Prospect Street
New Haven, CT 06520
United States

HOME PAGE: http://isps.yale.edu/team/xi-chen

IZA ( email )

Xiaobo Zhang

International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) ( email )

2033 K Street, NW
Washington, DC 20006
United States
202-862-5677 (Phone)
202-467-4439 (Fax)

Xin Zhang

Beijing Normal University (BNU) - School of Statistics ( email )

Beijing, 100875
China

Here is the Coronavirus
related research on SSRN

Paper statistics

Downloads
126
Abstract Views
560
rank
240,507
PlumX Metrics