Scandinavian Working Papers in Economics

Discussion Paper Series in Economics,
Norwegian School of Economics, Department of Economics

No 14/2023: (Breaking) intergenerational transmission of mental health

Aline Bütikofer (), Rita Ginja, Krzysztof Karbownik and Fanny Landaud
Additional contact information
Aline Bütikofer: Dept. of Economics, Norwegian School of Economics and Business Administration, Postal: NHH, Department of Economics, Helleveien 30, N-5045 Bergen, Norway
Rita Ginja: University of Bergen
Krzysztof Karbownik: Emory University
Fanny Landaud: CNRS and CY Cergy Paris University

Abstract: We estimate health associations across generations and dynasties using information on healthcare visits from administrative data for the entire Norwegian population. A parental mental health diagnosis is associated with a 9.3 percentage point (40%) higher probability of a mental health diagnosis of their adolescent child. Intensive margin physical and mental health associations are similar, and dynastic estimates account for about 40% of the intergenerational persistence. We also show that a policy targeting additional health resources for the young children of adults diagnosed with mental health conditions reduced the parent-child mental health association by about 40%.

Keywords: Mental Health; Intergenerational Persistence; Dynastic Effects; Public Policy

JEL-codes: I14; I18; J12; J62

Language: English

76 pages, June 30, 2023

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