Arline T. Geronimus

Department of Public Health Policy
and Administration
University of Michigan
School of Public Health
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-2029

NBER Working Papers and Publications

December 1995On the Validity of Using Census Geocode Characteristics to Proxy Individual Socioeconomic Characteristics
with John Bound, Lisa J. Neidert: t0189
Investigators of social differentials in health outcomes commonly augment incomplete micro data by appending socioeconomic characteristics of residential areas (such as median income in a zip code) to proxy for individual characteristics. However, little empirical attention has been paid to how well this aggregate information serves as a proxy for the individual characteristics of interest. We build on recent work addressing the biases inherent in proxies and consider two health-related examples within a statistical framework that illuminate the nature and sources of biases. Data from the Panel Study of Income Dynamics and the National Maternal and Infant Health Survey are linked to census data. We assess the validity of using the aggregate census information as a proxy for individual ...

Published: Geronimus, Arline T., John Bound and Lisa J. Neidert. "On The Validity Of Using Census Geocode Characteristics To Proxy Individual Socioeconomic Characteristics," Journal of the American Statistical Association, 1996, v91(434,Jun), 529-537.

May 1991The Socioeconomic Consequences of Teen Childbearing Reconsidered
with Sanders Korenman: w3701
Teen childbearing is commonly viewed as an irrational behavior that leads to long-term socioeconomic disadvantage for mothers and their children. Cross-sectional studies that estimate relationships between maternal age at first birth and socioeconomic indicators measured later in life form the empirical basis for this view. However1 these studies have failed to account adequately for differences in family background among women who time their births at different ages. We present new estimates of the consequences of teen childbearing that take into account observed and unobserved family background heterogeneity, comparing sisters who have timed their first births at different ages. Sister comparisons suggest that previous estimates are biased by failure to control adequately for family back...

Published: Quarterly Journal of Economics, November 1992, pp. 1187-1214

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