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Positive and negative effects of social status on longevity: Evidence from two literary prizes in Japan

Shusaku Sasaki, Hirofumi Kurokawa and Fumio Ohtake ()

Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, 2019, vol. 53, issue C, -

Abstract: We show evidence that a rise in social status (e.g., receiving a prize) has both positive and negative causal effects on recipients’ longevity, by using a dataset that covers Japan's two most prestigious and traditional literary recognitions. Although the two prizes share several characteristics, there exists the key difference that one of them is awarded to yet unknown or emerging novelists while the candidates for the other include a larger number of already established novelists. The main results of Cox's proportional hazard model analysis reveal that (1) the recipients of the prize for yet unknown or emerging novelists exhibit lower mortality than unsuccessful nominees, and the increase in longevity is estimated at 1.7 years; (2) by contrast, the recipients of the prize mainly for more established novelists report higher mortality than unsuccessful nominees, and the decrease in longevity is estimated at 5.3 years. We discuss with additional empirical analysis that we are likely to find a life-prolonging effect from receiving a prize when candidates belong to a lower social stratum. In so doing, this study provides narrative explanations for why earlier studies show conflicting relationships between receiving a prize and recipients’ longevity.

Keywords: Social status; Mortality; Health inequality; Cox's proportional hazard model; Time-dependent covariates; Time-dependent parameters (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: I12 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2019
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Working Paper: Positive and Negative Effects of Social Status on Longevity: Evidence from Two Literary Prizes in Japan (2018) Downloads
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Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:eee:jjieco:v:53:y:2019:i:c:5

DOI: 10.1016/j.jjie.2019.101037

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