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Information, Development, and Life-course Smoking Pattern in Mainland China and Taiwan over 50 Years
Dean R. Lillard, Associate Professor, Department Human Sciences at Ohio State University
We use retrospectively reported data on smoking behavior of residents of Mainland China and Taiwan to compare and contrast patterns in smoking behavior over the life-course of individuals in these two regions. Because we construct the life-history of smoking for all survey respondents, our data cover an exceptionally long period of time – up to fifty years in both samples. During this period, both societies experienced substantial social and economic changes. The two regions developed at much different rates and the political systems of the two areas evolved in very different ways. More importantly, governments in the two areas set policies that caused the flow of information about the health risks of smoking to differ across the regions and over time. We exploit these differences, using counts of articles in newspapers from 1951 to present, to explore whether and how the arrival of information affected life-course smoking decisions of residents in the two areas. We also present evidence that suggests how prices/taxes and key historical events might have affected decisions to smoke.
Tuesday, January 28, 2014 | 12:00 pm — 1:30 pm