Department of Economics
Norwegian School of Economics
Hellev. 30, N-5035 Bergen
Information about this author at RePEc
NBER Working Papers and Publications
|April 2013||This Is Only a Test? Long-Run Impacts of Prenatal Exposure to Radioactive Fallout|
with Sandra E. Black, Paul J. Devereux, Kjell G. Salvanes: w18987
Research increasingly shows that differences in endowments at birth need not be genetic but instead are influenced by environmental factors while the fetus is in the womb. In addition, these differences may persist well beyond childhood. In this paper, we study one such environmental factor - exposure to radiation --that affects individuals across the socio-economic spectrum. We use variation in radioactive exposure throughout Norway in the 1950s and early 60s, resulting from the abundance of nuclear weapon testing during that time period, to examine the effect of nuclear exposure in utero on outcomes such as IQ scores, education, earnings, and adult height. Importantly, we are able to examine the effects of exposure each month in utero to determine the periods when exposure is most harmfu...