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Illicit Drug Use and Labour Market Achievement: Evidence from the UK.

By Ziggy MacDonald and Stephen Pudney


This study, using data from the British Crime Survey (BCS), examines\ud the effect of drug use on occupational achievement. We start\ud by attempting to overcome the identification problem that results from\ud the limited set of drug use questions presented in the BCS. Taking this\ud into account, and allowing for the endogeneity of drug use in equations\ud for unemployment and labour market outcomes, we observe quite different\ud relationships for “soft” and “hard” drug use. For soft drugs,\ud there is a positive association with occupational achievement that diminishes\ud with age. This relationship also holds for males but not for\ud females. In contrast, we also find that past use of hard drugs significantly increases the likelihood of current unemployment, although it\ud appears to be unrelated to occupational success, conditional on achieving\ud employment

Topics: Illicit drugs, labour market participation, Productivity
Publisher: Dept. of Economics, University of Leicester.
Year: 1998
OAI identifier:

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