Munich Personal RePEc Archive

Regular Information and Health: Evidence from a Field Experiment with Undergraduate Students

Bernatzky, Marianne and Cabrera, José María and Cid, Alejandro (2015): Regular Information and Health: Evidence from a Field Experiment with Undergraduate Students.

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Abstract

We run a randomized controlled trial with the aim of evaluating the effects of a health seminar complemented with weekly reminders on health outcomes. Our research design exploits the excess of applicants over the intervention capacity. In this 4-month intervention with undergraduate students, we provide information on preventive behaviors and healthy habits and on how to modify personal behaviors that could derive in chronical illnesses. We find that all students who were subject to the treatment improved their knowledge relative to the control group. But they were not able to translate it into healthier behaviors, neither self-reported nor objectively measured by a physician. We hypothesize that high discount rates, overconfidence and the lack of complementary inputs may explain our findings.

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