Working Paper No. 1051

Sickness Absence and Local Benefit Cultures

Published: December 22, 2014Pages: 50Keywords: Income insurance; Sic-pay; Social norms; Neighborhood Effects; Sickness AbsenceJEL-codes: H56; I38; J22; Z13
Published version

Sickness Absence and Local Benefit Cultures Assar Lindbeck, Mårten Palme and Mats Persson

In many countries, sickness absence financed by generous insurance benefits is an important concern in the policy debate. There are strong variations in absence behavior among local geographical areas. Such variations are difficult to explain in terms of observable socioeconomic factors.

In this paper, we investigate whether such variations are related to group effects in the form of social interaction among individuals within neighborhoods. Well-known methodological problems arise when trying to answer this question. A special feature of our efforts to deal with these problems is that we adopt several alternative approaches to identify group effects.

Our study is based on a rich set of Swedish panel data, and we find indications of group effects in each of our approaches.

Assar Lindbeck


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Sick of Inequality?

An Introduction to the Relationship between Inequality and Health

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In this book Andreas Bergh, Therese Nilsson, IFN and Lund University, and Daniel Waldenström, IFN and Paris School of Economics, France, review the latest research on the relationship between inequality and health. What does inequality mean for our health? Does increasing income inequality affect outcomes such as obesity, life expectancy and subjective well-being?


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