|Project Status Reports:|
The objective of this research project is to produce empirical estimates guided by rigorous analytical models of parents' valuations of their own health relative to their child's health.
We have obtained a significant amount of policy-relevant analytical and empirical results.
The value that parents who smoke attach to their own, self-perceived, overall health status is, on average, about one half the value they attach to the overall health status they perceive for their children. If subsequent studies replicate this estimated relative value, the value adults attach to the health of their children can be inferred from existing studies of the value adults attach to their own health. The demand for distinctive research into the value of child health will then be less compelling.
An approximate one-to-one negative association exists between changes in the discount (interest) rate parents apply to investments in their children's future and changes in the children's full-scale and verbal IQs. A higher discount rate implies a lesser parental willingness to sacrifice their own consumption and investment to enhance the child's cognitive status and hence its adult prospects, including the child's prospective adult earnings. Given the abundant literature on the link between children's cognitive status and their adult earnings, this association between the discount rate and child IQ provides an avenue to assess the value parents attach to their own well being relative to that of their children.
Many of the statistical associations between individuals' health outcomes and valuations, and neighborhood hazards such as air pollution, may be biased by inattention to the set of protections internal to the household the individual can adopt against the threat the hazards pose. Environmental risks are endogenous. Many epidemiological and valuation studies of children's health and environmental hazards, which neglect parents' child-protection activities, should only be hesitantly applied and perhaps rethought.
A clear clear tradeoff exists between the extent to which a parent chooses to use a particular technique of reducing a child's exposure to an environmental hazard, and the efforts parents devote to acquiring access to alternative techniques. Public policies designed to encourage parental use of a particular technique will reduce parental use of alternative techniques. The net impact then may be to increase the risk the child suffers from the hazard.
Future activities for the next reporting period are to: (1) build and estimate a model of maternal prenatal chosen behaviors and neonatal child health; (2) acquire and evaluate contingent valuation data on parents' relative valuations of risks to own health and child health from food pathogens; and (3) write reports on existing findings about parents' valuations of altruism toward children and on multiple health symptoms in children.
Agee MD, Crocker TD. Parents' discount rate and the intergenerational transmission of cognitive skills. Economica 2002;69(273):143-154.
Archer DW, Crocker TD, Shogren JF. Endogenous risk in child care. Working paper, Department of Economics and Finance, University of Wyoming, Laramie, WY, 2002.
Agee MD, Crocker TD. Smoking parents' valuations of own and children's health. Working paper, Department of Economics and Finance, University of Wyoming, Laramie, WY, 2002.
Agee MD, Crocker TD. Smoking parents' valuations of own and children's health. Presented at the Association of Environmental and Resource Economists Workshop, Bar Harbor, ME, June 28-30, 2001.
Agee MD, Crocker TD. Smoking parents' valuations of own and children's health. Presented at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Workshop, Silver Spring, MD, November 2001.
Supplemental Keywords: children's health values, adults' health values, benefits transfer.