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Does Pollution Drive Achievement? The Effect of Traffic Pollution on Academic Performance

Jennifer Heissel, Claudia Persico () and David Simon

Journal of Human Resources, 2022, vol. 57, issue 3, 747-776

Abstract: We examine the effect of traffic pollution on student outcomes by leveraging variation in wind patterns for schools the same distance from major highways. We compare within-student changes in achievement for students transitioning between schools near highways, where one school has greater levels of pollution because it is downwind of a highway. As students graduate from elementary/middle school to middle/high school, their test scores decrease, behavioral incidents increase, and absence rates increase when they attend a downwind school, relative to when they attend an upwind school in the same zip code. Even within zip codes, microclimates can contribute to inequality.

JEL-codes: I10 I21 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2022
Note: DOI: 10.3368/jhr.57.3.1218-9903R2
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Related works:
Working Paper: Does Pollution Drive Achievement? The Effect of Traffic Pollution on Academic Performance (2019) Downloads
Working Paper: Does Pollution Drive Achievement? The Effect of Traffic Pollution on Academic Performance (2019) Downloads
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