Article

Identification of Social Interactions through Partially Overlapping Peer Groups

American Economic Journal Applied Economics (Impact Factor: 2.76). 04/2010; 2(2):241-75. DOI: 10.1257/app.2.2.241
Source: RePEc

ABSTRACT

In this paper, we demonstrate that, in a context where peer groups do not overlap fully, it is possible to identify all the relevant parameters of the standard linear-in-means model of social interactions. We apply this novel identification structure to study peer effects in the choice of college major. Results show that one is more likely to choose a major when many of her peers make the same choice. We also show that peers can divert students from majors in which they have a relative ability advantage, with adverse consequences on academic performance, entry wages, and job satisfaction. (JEL I23, J24, J31, Z13)

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Available from: Michele Pellizzari
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    • "Additionally, in institutions of higher education in some countries, student groups are exogenously formed, and curricula are dominated by compulsory courses (De Giorgi et al. 2010; De Paola and Scoppa 2010; Androushchak et al. 2013). "
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    ABSTRACT: We study how the achievements of university students are influenced by the characteristics and achievements of peers in individuals’ social networks. Defining peer group in terms of friendship and study partner ties enables us to apply a network regression model and thereby disentangle the influence of peers’ performance from that of peers’ background. We find significant positive peer effects via the academic achievements of friends and study partners. Students’ grades increase with the abilities of study partners, who may or may not also be friends; no such effect is observed for friends who are not also study partners. Additionally, the effects of the abilities of other classmates are found to be insignificant. The results support the claim that peer influence acts mainly through knowledge-sharing channels between students who are connected by social ties.
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    • ")—, el enfoque de las escuelas eficaces (Edmonds, 1986; Fernández, 1999; Hanushek, Link y Woessmann, 2012), la composición social de la escuela y los efectos de los pares (Wilkinson y otros, 2002; Sacerdote, 2001; Graham, 2008; De Giorgi, Pellizzari y Redaelli, 2010) fueron surgiendo e incorporando miradas específicas que permitieran comprender las desigualdades que operaban en la sociedad y cómo el ámbito escolar se hacía eco de ellas o, por el contrario, constituía una forma de combatirlas. En particular, resultan relevantes para la presente investigación los hallazgos reportados por Hanushek y Woessmann (2010) sobre la relación entre las pruebas de logro educativo y el tipo y la calidad de trabajos obtenidos en el mercado laboral. "
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    • "To tackle this last issue, we instrument the older sibling's test scores at age 16 using the average test scores of her school mates. 5 This peer identification strategy is similar to that adopted by Lee (2003), Bramoullé et al. (2009) and De Giorgi et al. (2010) and is based on the presence of some intransitivity in the network of peers. Intransitivity occurs if a person interacts with her peers but not with all of the peers of her peers. "
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    ABSTRACT: We provide the first empirical evidence on direct sibling spillover effects in school achievement using English administrative data. Our identification strategy exploits the variation in school test scores across three subjects observed at age 11 and 16 and the variation in the composition of school mates between siblings. These two sources of variation have been separately used to identify school peer effects, but never in combination. By combining them we are able to identify a sibling spillover effect that is net of unobserved child, family and school characteristics shared by siblings. We find a modest spillover effect from the older sibling to the younger but not vice versa. This effect is considerably higher for siblings from deprived backgrounds, where sibling sharing of school knowledge might compensate for the lack of parental information.
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