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Positive externalities of congestion on health: A case study of chronic illness in Japan for the period 1988–2009.

Yamamura, Eiji (2011): Positive externalities of congestion on health: A case study of chronic illness in Japan for the period 1988–2009.

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Abstract

This paper explores, using Japanese panel data for the years 1988–2009, how externalities from congestion and human capital influence deaths caused by chronic illnesses. Major findings through fixed effects 2SLS estimation were as follows: (1) during the first-half period 1988-98, the number of deaths was proportionally smaller in areas where social capital was larger. Population density and human capital, however, did not affect number of deaths; (2) during the second-half period 1999–2009, the number of deaths was proportionally smaller in more densely populated areas. In addition, human capital contributed to decease the number of deaths. Social capital, on the other hand, did not influence number of deaths. These findings suggest that human capital and positive externalities stemming from congestion make greater contributions to improving lifestyle when chronic illness increases.

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