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Transitioning to Adulthood: How Do Young Adults Fare and What Characteristics are Associated With a Lower-Risk Transition

March 23, 2015 Comments off

Transitioning to Adulthood: How Do Young Adults Fare and What Characteristics are Associated With a Lower-Risk Transition (PDF)
Source: Child Trends

Youth must navigate various developmental tasks as they transition to adulthood (Arnett, 2014). During this period of “emerging adulthood,” young people explore roles and relationships before committing to the ones they will fill as adults.

This brief seeks to identify patterns and transitions during emerging adulthood to obtain a better understanding of the likelihood that young adults will experience a lower-risk transition to adulthood. We analyzed panel data from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health (Add Health, N=12,166), using person-centered analyses, to examine the odds of youth engaging in lower-risk patterns/trajectories, specifically, minimal problems with heavy alcohol use, illicit drug use, criminal behavior, and financial hardship. Lower risk transitions were defined as avoiding or overcoming problems by adulthood. We found considerable variation among young adults in reaching these milestones.

Fast Times During Spring Breaks: Are Traffic Fatalities Another Consequence?

March 20, 2015 Comments off

Fast Times During Spring Breaks: Are Traffic Fatalities Another Consequence?
Source: Economic Inquiry

Every year in the United States, millions of college students travel for spring break, spending billions of dollars. We examine a potential adverse consequence of spring break that has received little attention in the literature—traffic safety. In particular, we estimate the impact of spring break season on fatal passenger vehicle crashes. Using daily county-level longitudinal data on traffic fatalities in popular spring break destinations from 1982 to 2011, we conduct separate analyses by age groups, license status, and alcohol involvement in the crash. Our findings indicate that passenger vehicle fatalities are significantly overrepresented during the spring break season. (JEL I12, I18, H73)

The Lost Generation of the Great Recession

March 20, 2015 Comments off

The Lost Generation of the Great Recession
Source: Social Science Research Network

This paper analyzes the effects of the Great Recession on different generations. While older generations have suffered the largest decline in wealth due to the collapse in asset prices, younger generations have suffered the largest decline in labor income. Potentially, the young may benefit from the purchase of cheaper assets, especially if they have access to credit. To analyze the impact of these channels, I construct an overlapping generations model with borrowing constraints in which households choose a portfolio over risky and risk-free assets. Shocks to labor efficiency and uncertainty regarding the return on risky assets generate a recession with a drop in asset prices and cross-sectional changes in risky investment that are consistent with the recent recession. Overall, the young suffer the largest welfare losses, equivalent to an 8 percent reduction in lifetime consumption.

Public Health Implications of Raising the Minimum Age of Legal Access to Tobacco Products (2015)

March 19, 2015 Comments off

Public Health Implications of Raising the Minimum Age of Legal Access to Tobacco Products (2015)
Source: Institute of Medicine

Tobacco use by adolescents and young adults poses serious concerns. Nearly all adults who have ever smoked daily first tried a cigarette before 26 years of age. Current cigarette use among adults is highest among persons aged 21 to 25 years. The parts of the brain most responsible for cognitive and psychosocial maturity continue to develop and change through young adulthood, and adolescent brains are uniquely vulnerable to the effects of nicotine.

At the request of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, Public Health Implications of Raising the Minimum Age of Legal Access to Tobacco Products considers the likely public health impact of raising the minimum age for purchasing tobacco products. The report reviews the existing literature on tobacco use patterns, developmental biology and psychology, health effects of tobacco use, and the current landscape regarding youth access laws, including minimum age laws and their enforcement. Based on this literature, the report makes conclusions about the likely effect of raising the minimum age to 19, 21, and 25 years on tobacco use initiation. The report also quantifies the accompanying public health outcomes based on findings from two tobacco use simulation models. According to the report, raising the minimum age of legal access to tobacco products, particularly to ages 21 and 25, will lead to substantial reductions in tobacco use, improve the health of Americans across the lifespan, and save lives. Public Health Implications of Raising the Minimum Age of Legal Access to Tobacco Products will be a valuable reference for federal policy makers and state and local health departments and legislators.

Improving mental health services for young people

March 19, 2015 Comments off

Improving mental health services for young people
Source: Department of Health

Future in mind – promoting, protecting and improving our children and young people’s mental health and wellbeing’ makes a number of proposals the government wishes to see by 2020. These include:

  • tackling stigma and improving attitudes to mental illness
  • introducing more access and waiting time standards for services
  • establishing ‘one stop shop’ support services in the community
  • improving access for children and young people who are particularly vulnerable

The report sets out how much of this can be achieved through better working between the NHS, local authorities, voluntary and community services, schools and other local services. It also makes it clear that many of these changes can be achieved by working differently, rather than needing significant investment.

How Millennials Get News: Inside the Habits of America’s First Digital Generation

March 17, 2015 Comments off

How Millennials Get News: Inside the Habits of America’s First Digital Generation
Source: Media Insight Project (American Press Institute and AP-NORC Center)

For years, researchers and social critics have worried that the newest generation of American adults is less interested in news than those who grew up in the pre-digital age.

Much of the concern has come from data that suggest adults age 18-34—so-called Millennials—do not visit news sites, read print newspapers, watch television news, or seek out news in great numbers. This generation, instead, spends more time on social networks, often on mobile devices. The worry is that Millennials’ awareness of the world, as a result, is narrow, their discovery of events is incidental and passive, and that news is just one of many random elements in a social feed.

A new comprehensive study that looks closely at how people learn about the world on these different devices and platforms finds that this newest generation of American adults is anything but “newsless,” passive, or civically uninterested.

This study extends the work from the Media Insight Project’s 2014 Personal News Cycle to provide a deeper investigation of the news and information habits of Millennials age 18-34. It included two components — a quantitative survey of Millennials nationwide and qualitative interviews and follow-up exercises with small friend groups of Millennials in Chicago, Illinois; San Francisco and Oakland, California; and at the University of Mary Washington in Fredericksburg, Virginia. The researchers sought to supplement the quantitative survey research with a qualitative component to obtain a deeper understanding of Millennials’ online lives and news consumption habits.

The Labor Force in an Aging and Growing America; Mapping America’s Futures, Brief 4

March 17, 2015 Comments off

The Labor Force in an Aging and Growing America; Mapping America’s Futures, Brief 4
Source: Urban Institute

From 2010 to 2030, patterns of labor force participation will change across regions of the United States. In some regions, the primary demographic effect will be changes in age structure, which will drive declines in labor force participation rates. In other regions, in-migration and changes in the racial and ethnic composition of the adult population will primarily increase the numbers of the “dependent population”-people not in the labor force. Still other regions will have to accommodate both sharply declining participation rates and sharply increasing nonparticipants. These diverse patterns of changes in labor force participation pose different challenges to regions.

See also:
+ Evolving Patterns in Diversity Mapping America’s Futures, Brief 2
+ Children and Youth in an Aging America; Mapping America’s Futures, Brief 3

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