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    Effect of Retirement on Cognition: EvidenceFrom the Irish Marriage Bar

    Mosca, Irene and Wright, Robert E. (2018) Effect of Retirement on Cognition: EvidenceFrom the Irish Marriage Bar. Demography, 55 (4). pp. 1317-1341. ISSN 0070-3370

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    This study empirically investigates the relationship between retirement du-ration and cognition among older Irish women using microdata collected in the thirdwave of The Irish Longitudinal Study on Ageing. Ordinary least squares (OLS)regression estimates indicate that the longer an individual has been retired, the lowerthe cognitive functioning, with other factors thought to affect cognition held constant(e.g., age, education, and early-life socioeconomic conditions). However, retirement ispotentially endogenous with respect to cognition because cognition may affect deci-sions relating to retiring. If so, the OLS estimates will be biased. To test for thispossibility, instrumental variable (IV) estimation is used. This method requires an IVthat is highly correlated with retirement duration but not correlated with cognition. Theinstrument used in this study is based on the so-called marriage bar, the legal require-ment that women leave paid employment upon getting married, which took effect inIreland in the 1930s and was abolished only in the 1970s. The IV regression estimates,along with formal statistical tests, provide no evidence in support of the view thatcognition affects retirement decisions. The finding of a small negative effect ofretirement duration on cognition is robust to alternative empirical specifications. Thesefindings are discussed in the wider context of the effects of work-like and work-relatedactivities on cognition.

    Item Type: Article
    Keywords: Cognition; Aging; Working; Retirement; Women;
    Academic Unit: Faculty of Social Sciences > Economics, Finance and Accounting
    Item ID: 10474
    Identification Number:
    Depositing User: Irene Mosca
    Date Deposited: 12 Feb 2019 15:32
    Journal or Publication Title: Demography
    Publisher: Springer VS
    Refereed: Yes
    Use Licence: This item is available under a Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike Licence (CC BY-NC-SA). Details of this licence are available here

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