The causal effects of education on health: evidence from Mendelian randomization and the raising of the school leaving age

  • 16 May 2018

    11:00-12:30, Clay Room, Nuffield College

  • Sociology Seminar   Add to Calendar
Speaker: Neil Davies

Bristol Medical School

This event is part of the Sociology Seminar Series.

Please note this seminar will take place on Wednesday 16th May.

On average, educated people are healthier, wealthier and have higher life expectancy than those with less education. Numerous studies have attempted to determine whether these differences are caused by education, or are merely correlated with it and are ultimately caused by another factor. Previous studies have used a range of natural experiments to provide causal evidence. Here we exploit two natural experiments, perturbation of germline genetic variation associated with education which occurs at conception, known as Mendelian randomization, and a policy reform, the raising of the school leaving age in the UK in 1972. Previous studies have suggested that the differences in outcomes associated with education may be due to confounding. However, the two independent sources of variation we exploit largely imply consistent causal effects of education on outcomes much later in life.

The Sociology Seminar Series is convened by Lucie Kalousova, Per Engzell and Julia BenrmanFor more information about this or any of the seminars in the series, please contact