Past Research Using FSRDC Data

For examples of past research using FSRDC data, see this searchable database.  For examples of current approved projects in the FSRDC system, see the CES Annual Report. Appendix 3 of this report lists abstracts of current projects.

Published Research from KRDC Projects

Bollinger, Christopher R., Barry T. Hirsch, Charles Hokayem, and James P. Ziliak. "Trouble in the Tails: What We Know About Earnings Nonresponse 30 Years after Lillard, Smith, and Welch," Journal of Political Economy, 2019, 129(5): 2143-2185.

Courtemanche, Charles, Art Carden, Xilin Zhou, and Murugi Ndirangu. “Do Walmart Supercenters Improve Food Security?” Applied Economic Perspectives and Policy, 2019, 41(2): 177-198.

Heflin, Colleen, Samuel J. Ingram, and James P. Ziliak. “The Effect of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program on Mortality," Health Affairs, 2019, 38(11): 1807-1815.

Hwang, Grace. "The Impact of Access to Prenatal Health Insurance on Child Health and Development: Evidence from the Children's Health Insurance Program Unborn Child Option," Essays in the Impact of Early Life Access to Public Programs, The Ohio State University, 2019, 1-66.

Hwang, Grace. "The Effects of Public Health Intervention in Prenatal Period on Health Outcomes in Early Childhood: Evidence from the Children's Health Insurance Program Reauthorization Act of 2009," Essays in the Impact of Early Life Access to Public Programs, The Ohio State University, 2019, 67-117.

Current KRDC Projects Using Data from U.S. Census Bureau

“Wells and Well Being: How the Shale Energy Revolution is Changing Rural Families” Michael Betz (Ohio State University)
Advancements in oil and gas drilling have led to a rapid expansion of shale energy production across the United States. While increased domestic energy production has important strategic implications for the country as a whole, the most profound impacts may be on the small towns and rural areas where the energy extraction is occurring. Much work has been done to estimate the economic and environmental impacts of shale energy development, yet little empirical work has assessed its impact on family outcomes and community demographic composition. We use restricted access American Community Survey (ACS) microdata covering 2006-2014 to estimated Difference-in-Differences (DiD) models of shale energy development on family processes. Family outcomes of interest include fertility (marital and nonmarital), marriage, divorce, cohabitation, and migration. We do not expect shale development to have progressed long enough to have a measurable impact on overall fertility rates. However, non-marital fertility is more closely associated with short-term individual level economic conditions (Aassve, 2003; Kearney & Levine, 2012; Ryan, Manlove & Hofferth, 2006), so we expect shale development to significantly impact non-marital fertility.

“The Persistence of Place Based Policies” David Agrawal (University of Kentucky) and Kenneth Tester (University of Kentucky)
Federal and state governments create place-based policies to reduce the concentration of poverty and to improve the status of high poverty neighborhoods. Some evidence suggests that these policies improve the economic status of the targeted neighborhoods relative to similar poor neighborhoods, whether these gains persist once the programs are removed remains an open question. This project examines the funding expiration of Renewal Communities in 2009 and the effect of this termination on residents and workers in Renewal Communities on outcomes such as wages, employment, hours worked, industry employed, family income, public assistance income, and housing values. Using a generalized difference-in-differences design where Renewal Communities are the treatment group and Empowerment Zones are the comparison group, we study this question using restricted 1990 and 2000 Decennial Census and the 2001-2017 American Community Survey (ACS). The restricted data allow us to identify census tracts where individuals live and/or work in, as the placed-based policies are determined at the census tract level. Understanding the lasting impact of place-based policies once they expire is important for policy makers to know whether these programs temporarily or permanently lift communities out of poverty.

Current KRDC Projects Using Data from National Center for Health Statistics

“Did the Great Recession of 2008-2009 Modify the Health Status of US Adults?” Charles Courtemanche (University of Kentucky)
The “Great Recession of 2008-2009” is considered by many social scientists to have had profound effects on adult attitudes and behaviors across a broad range of psychosocial and economic issues. For many adults and their families, household budgets and wealth were severely reduced or constrained with the potential consequence of changes to lifestyle and, in turn, health status. Especially, during the recession, the average home price plunged 33 percent and the sharp decline in home prices lowered consumers' wealth and consumer confidence. Housing is the main source of the wealth to the vast majority of families and therefore a change in home prices can influence the behavior of economic agents, leading to change in risky health behaviors and health outcomes. Our proposed study has four following specific aims: 1) develop a dataset linking NHANES data for the period 2001-2014 with Zillow home price indices, Bureau of Labor Statistics unemployment data, and United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) food price data; 2) describe how trends in health behaviors and outcomes are associated with trends in unemployment rate and home prices; 3) conduct a more detailed exploration of the effects of local and state unemployment rates and home prices on health outcomes; and 4) examine long-term (rather than contemporaneous ) effects of changes in a given periods’ unemployment rate and housing prices on future health outcomes by including monthly lags of unemployment rates and housing prices into the analysis.

“The Relationship Between SNAP and Mortality” Colleen Heflin (Syracuse University) and James Ziliak (University of Kentucky)
The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) is the largest food assistance program in the United States. Although participation in it has been shown to reduce food insecurity, there is comparatively less clear causal evidence of positive health effects of participation, particularly among adults. We examined the relationship between SNAP participation and premature mortality using data for 1997–2009 from the National Health Interview Survey, linked to data for 1999–2011 from the National Death Index. Results from bivariate probit models found that participation in SNAP led to a populationwide reduction of 1–2 percentage points in mortality from all causes and a reduction in specific causes of death among people ages 40–64.

“The Effects of the Children's Health Insurance Program Reauthorization Act of 2009 (CHIPRA) New Option for Pregnant Non-Citizens on Their Hospital Utilization and Infant's Health” Grace Hwang (Ohio State University)
This paper studies the effects of public health insurance in utero on children's health outcomes. The Children's Health Insurance Program Reauthorization Act of 2009 (CHIPRA) new option eliminated the five-year waiting period for Medicaid and CHIP eligibility that had been imposed on pregnant noncitizens since the 1996 welfare reform. This provides a useful research setting to isolate the effects of in utero coverage from early childhood coverage because US-born children of noncitizens were already eligible for public health insurance before the CHIPRA. Thus, the policy change only affected the coverage in utero. The results show that CHIPRA new option caused an improvement in children's health. Children who were eligible in utero have a 13% better parent-reported health status compared to those who were not. Additional analysis shows that this improvement was due to the take-up of CHIPRA new option.

“Explaining Health Disparities in the Sexual Minority Population: The Role of Neighborhood Effects” Matthew Ruther (University of Louisville) and Ning Hsieh (Michigan State University)
The health of an individual is affected not only by characteristics and behaviors of the individual, but also by the environment in which the individual lives. Although the idea of “neighborhood effects” is well-established in the health literature, whether these effects are different for sexual minority/LGBT populations is unknown. There is ample evidence that the neighborhoods in which sexual minorities reside are distinct from those in which heterosexuals reside, which could give rise to differential neighborhood effects. The evaluation of whether such a differential exists is important because it may help to explain existing disparities in health outcomes and access to care between sexual minorities and heterosexuals, and because it may lead to better estimates of the effects of individual-level or behavioral characteristics on sexual minority health. Unfortunately, the neighborhood identifiers necessary to add this contextual information to individual survey respondents in the NHIS, which includes large samples of sexual minorities, are not publicly available. These variables are restricted and are only available through the Research Data Center. The aim of this research is to model health outcomes and access to care of LGBT individuals, relative to straight individuals, accounting for differences in individual factors and structural characteristics of the neighborhood.

“The Impacts of the Access to Prenatal Care on the Benefits of Next Generation: Using the CHIP Unborn Child Option” Grace Hwang (Ohio State University)
There has been a lack of evidence on the causal impact of in utero public health insurance on child health beyond the neonatal period, mainly due to difficulties in disentangling the effect of in utero coverage from that of post-birth coverage. The implementation of the Unborn Child Option (UCO) as part of the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP) provides a unique opportunity to isolate the causal effects of in utero public health insurance on child health beyond birth outcomes. The UCO allowed previously ineligible pregnant noncitizens to obtain public health insurance for prenatal care. Regardless of the reform, U.S.-born children of these women receive birthright citizenship and become eligible for public health insurance if their household income is low enough. Thus, the only thing changed by the reform is access to in utero public health insurance, holding post-birth coverage constant. Using state-level variation in whether and when the UCO was adopted, I find that the reform caused improvement in children's outcomes, such as parent-reported health status, chronic health condition, and cognitive ability. Interestingly, it only appears from age four while no improvement is shown at earlier periods. I accordingly provide suggestive evidence on one possible mechanism: the improved maternal mental health during pregnancy.

Current KRDC Projects Using Data from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality

“Impacts of the Affordable Care Act on Health Care Utilization” Charles Courtemanche (University of Kentucky)
The proposed research will use data from the Medical Expenditure Panel Survey to investigate the impacts of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) on the health care utilization and expenditures of non‐elderly adults. The research will utilize a difference‐in‐difference‐in-differences model with the differences coming from time, state Medicaid expansion status, and local area pre‐treatment uninsured rate. This model will allows us to disentangle the causal effect of the ACA from the underlying time trend while also accounting for the possible endogeneity of state Medicaid expansion decisions. The proposed research will move past estimating impacts on health insurance outcomes to also examine numerous outcomes related to health care utilization. These outcomes will include frequency of and expenditures on: physician and non‐physician office visits; inpatient, outpatient, and emergency room hospital visits; and prescription drugs.

“Economic Downturns and Access to Medicaid” Joseph Benitez (University of Kentucky)
During periods of economic downturn, many households may lose access to private health insurance coverage during unanticipated unemployment spells. The Great Recession saw accelerated unemployment rates and decrease insurance coverage rates—in particular, decreased rates of employer-sponsored health insurance coverage. In times of economic uncertainty, Medicaid coverage acts as a safety net to allow households to address their immediate health care needs and potentially mitigate some of the more severe effects of the recession; however, accessibility Medicaid as an alternative coverage source can vary greatly across states. This work’s purpose is to utilize the Medical Expenditure Panel Survey’s Household Component (MEPS-HC) to understand Medicaid’s role as a potential household stabilizer during periods of financial insecurity. The restricted version of the MEPS-HC is necessary for this work because the state-of-residence identifiers are needed to determine residence in a state with a more generous program or a program with limited accessibility due to a lower income threshold. County identifiers are also required in order to capture the local ‘intensity’ of the economic downturn as indicated by rises in unemployment or housing foreclosures.

KRDC also hosts several internal Census Bureau projects