Pollution and politician productivity: the effect of PM on MPs

Heyes, Anthony, Rivers, Nicholas and Schaufele, Brandon (2019) Pollution and politician productivity: the effect of PM on MPs. Land Economics, 95 (2). pp. 157-173. ISSN 0023-7639

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Applying methods of textual analysis to all 119,225 speeches made in the Canadian House of Commons between 2006 and 2011, we establish that air pollution reduces the speech quality of Canadian members of parliament (MPs). Exposure to fine particulate matter concentrations exceeding 15 µg/m3 causes a 2.3% reduction in the quality of MPs’ speech (equivalent to a 2.6 month decrease in education). For more difficult communication tasks the decrement in quality is equivalent to the loss of 6.5 months of schooling. Our design accounts for the potential endogeneity of exposure and controls for many potential confounders including individual fixed effects.

Item Type: Article
Schools and Departments: University of Sussex Business School > Economics
Depositing User: Anthony Heyes
Date Deposited: 05 Sep 2018 15:56
Last Modified: 01 Jul 2019 14:46
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/77856

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