Logo: to the web site of Uppsala University

uu.sePublications from Uppsala University
Change search
Link to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Publications (10 of 10) Show all publications
Buser, T., Ahlskog, R., Johannesson, M., Koellinger, P. & Oskarsson, S. (2024). The causal effect of genetic variants linked to cognitive and non-cognitive skills on education and labor market outcomes. Labour Economics, 90, Article ID 102544.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>The causal effect of genetic variants linked to cognitive and non-cognitive skills on education and labor market outcomes
Show others...
2024 (English)In: Labour Economics, ISSN 0927-5371, E-ISSN 1879-1034, Vol. 90, article id 102544Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

We estimate the effect of genetic variants that are associated with differences in cognitive and non -cognitive skills on labor market and education outcomes by linking genetic data from individuals in the Swedish Twin Registry to government registry data. Genes are fixed over the life cycle and genetic differences between full siblings are random, making it possible to establish the causal effects of within -family genetic variation. We show that polygenic indices associated with cognitive skills and personality traits significantly affect income, occupation, and educational attainment. By comparing estimates that use only within -family variation to OLS estimates with and without socioeconomic controls, our results also provide indications of the degree of (residual) confounding, which can be useful for research conducted in datasets that do not contain sibling pairs. Overall, our results indicate that education and labor market outcomes are partially the result of a genetic lottery.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Elsevier, 2024
Keywords
Personality traits, Economic preferences, Cognitive skills, Labor markets, Education, Polygenic indices
National Category
Economics
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-532228 (URN)10.1016/j.labeco.2024.102544 (DOI)001240220000001 ()
Available from: 2024-06-19 Created: 2024-06-19 Last updated: 2024-06-19Bibliographically approved
Ahlskog, R. (2023). Extraversion Probably Does Not Cause Political Participation. Evidence from Two Genetically Informed Designs. Political Psychology, 44(6), 1301-1318
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Extraversion Probably Does Not Cause Political Participation. Evidence from Two Genetically Informed Designs
2023 (English)In: Political Psychology, ISSN 0162-895X, E-ISSN 1467-9221, Vol. 44, no 6, p. 1301-1318Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

A substantial literature in political psychology has emphasized the importance of personality traits for understanding differences in political participation. One such trait is extraversion. However, the causal status of this relationship is complicated by a number of issues, not least genetic confounding stemming from the heritability of both personality traits and political participation. This study confirms the well-established naive relationship between extraversion and participation, but goes on with (a) a discordant MZ twin design and (b) a new approach using measured genetic variation, or a polygenic index, in the given trait (extraversion) to assess the causal nature of this relationship. First, utilizing variation in extraversion and participation within identical twin pairs shows that twins with higher extraversion do not participate more. Second, random variation within fraternal twin pairs in a polygenic index of extraversion does predict trait extraversion, but does not predict political participation. In summary, previously identified associations between extraversion and political participation are not likely to be causal, but instead reflect common underlying familial factors.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
John Wiley & Sons, 2023
Keywords
cotwin design, extraversion, personality, political participation, polygenic index
National Category
Psychology (excluding Applied Psychology) Political Science (excluding Public Administration Studies and Globalisation Studies)
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-522425 (URN)10.1111/pops.12901 (DOI)000995338200001 ()
Funder
Swedish Research Council, 201-9-00244Riksbankens Jubileumsfond, P1-80782:1
Available from: 2024-02-09 Created: 2024-02-09 Last updated: 2024-02-09Bibliographically approved
Nyman, P., Aggeborn, L. & Ahlskog, R. (2023). Filling in the blanks: How does information about the Swedish EITC affect labour supply?. Labour Economics, 85, Article ID 102435.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Filling in the blanks: How does information about the Swedish EITC affect labour supply?
2023 (English)In: Labour Economics, ISSN 0927-5371, E-ISSN 1879-1034, Vol. 85, article id 102435Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

We investigate the role of information about tax incentives for the labour-leisure choice. We randomize 37,000 leaflets about the Swedish EITC, and then study the effects with pre-registered analyses and administrative data. Our focus is on the household decision to allocate between labour income and parental leave payments. The EITC and its interactions with the parental leave system is not well-known. Despite the substantial incentives involved, and the flexibility with which a person may earn labour income, we find that information about the EITC has a precisely estimated zero impact on labour supply on the extensive and the intensive margin.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Elsevier, 2023
Keywords
Labour supply, Information, Experiment, Earned Income Tax Credit, Sweden
National Category
Economics
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-514904 (URN)10.1016/j.labeco.2023.102435 (DOI)001073594600001 ()
Available from: 2023-10-31 Created: 2023-10-31 Last updated: 2023-10-31Bibliographically approved
Ahlskog, R. & Oskarsson, S. (2023). Quantifying Bias from Measurable and Unmeasurable Confounders Across Three Domains of Individual Determinants of Political Preferences. Political Analysis, 31(2), 181-194
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Quantifying Bias from Measurable and Unmeasurable Confounders Across Three Domains of Individual Determinants of Political Preferences
2023 (English)In: Political Analysis, ISSN 1047-1987, E-ISSN 1476-4989, Vol. 31, no 2, p. 181-194Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

A core part of political research is to identify how political preferences are shaped. The nature of these questions is such that robust causal identification is often difficult to achieve, and we are not seldom stuck with observational methods that we know have limited causal validity. The purpose of this paper is to measure the magnitude of bias stemming from both measurable and unmeasurable confounders across three broad domains of individual determinants of political preferences: socio-economic factors, moral values, and psychological constructs. We leverage a unique combination of rich Swedish registry data for a large sample of identical twins, with a comprehensive battery of 34 political preference measures, and build a meta-analytical model comparing our most conservative observational (naive) estimates with discordant twin estimates. This allows us to infer the amount of bias from unobserved genetic and shared environmental factors that remains in the naive models for our predictors, while avoiding precision issues common in family-based designs. The results are sobering: in most cases, substantial bias remains in naive models. A rough heuristic is that about half of the effect size even in conservative observational estimates is composed of confounding.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Cambridge University Press, 2023
Keywords
policy preferences, causal inference, twin, family fixed effects, genetic confounding
National Category
Economics
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-511029 (URN)10.1017/pan.2022.2 (DOI)000759210200001 ()
Funder
Riksbankens Jubileumsfond, P18:-0728:1
Available from: 2023-09-07 Created: 2023-09-07 Last updated: 2023-09-07Bibliographically approved
Oskarsson, S., Ahlskog, R., Dawes, C. T. & Lindgren, K.-O. (2022). Persistent Inequalities: The Origins of Intergenerational Associations in Voter Turnout. Journal of Politics, 84(3), 1337-1352
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Persistent Inequalities: The Origins of Intergenerational Associations in Voter Turnout
2022 (English)In: Journal of Politics, ISSN 0022-3816, E-ISSN 1468-2508, Vol. 84, no 3, p. 1337-1352Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

We use population-wide Swedish data with information on adopted children’s biological and adoptive parents to assess the importance of prebirth factors (measured by biological parents’ voting) and postbirth socialization factors (as captured by adoptive parents’ voting) for generating intergenerational associations in voter turnout. We find that both prebirth and postbirth factors explain the parent-child similarity in turnout behavior. More importantly, we show that the conditions that strengthen the social pathways to intergenerational transmission—such as youth and exposure to consistent parental behavior—at the same time weaken the biological mechanisms and vice versa. Follow-up analyses based on US and UK samples suggest that these results are externally valid. Our findings are important for understanding how political inequality is reproduced across generations.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
University of Chicago Press, 2022
National Category
Political Science (excluding Public Administration Studies and Globalisation Studies)
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-475636 (URN)10.1086/716296 (DOI)000795901800002 ()
Funder
EU, European Research Council, 683214 CONPOLSwedish Research Council, 2017-02472Swedish Research Council, 2019-00244Riksbankens Jubileumsfond, P18-0782:1
Available from: 2022-06-03 Created: 2022-06-03 Last updated: 2023-09-04Bibliographically approved
Ahlskog, R. & Brännlund, A. (2022). Uncovering the source of patrimonial voting. Political Behavior, 44(4), 1681-1702
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Uncovering the source of patrimonial voting
2022 (English)In: Political Behavior, ISSN 0190-9320, E-ISSN 1573-6687, Vol. 44, no 4, p. 1681-1702Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The boom in wealth inequality seen in recent decades has generated a steep rise in scholarly interest in both the drivers and the consequences of the wealth gap. In political science, a pertinent questionregards the political behavior across the wealth spectrum. A common argument is that the wealthy practice patrimonial voting, i.e. voting for right-wing parties to maximize returns on their assets. While thispattern is descriptively well documented, it is less certain to what extent this reflects an actual causal relationship between wealth and political preferences. In this study, we provide new evidence by exploitingwealth variation within identical twin pairs. Our findings suggest that while more wealth is descriptivelyconnected to more support for right-wing parties, the causal impact of wealth on policy preferences islikely highly overstated. For several relevant policy areas these effects may not exist at all. Furthermore,the bias in naive observational estimates seems to be mainly driven by environmental familial confoundersshared within twin pairs, rather than genetic confounding.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Springer Nature, 2022
Keywords
Patrimonial voting, Discordant twin design, Wealth, Political preferences
National Category
Political Science
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-431622 (URN)10.1007/s11109-020-09669-4 (DOI)000613091500001 ()36415508 (PubMedID)
Funder
EU, European Research Council, ERC-2015CoGRiksbankens Jubileumsfond, P18:-0728:1
Available from: 2021-01-15 Created: 2021-01-15 Last updated: 2023-09-04Bibliographically approved
Howe, L. J., Nivard, M. G., Morris, T. T., Hansen, A. F., Rasheed, H., Cho, Y., . . . Davies, N. M. (2022). Within-sibship genome-wide association analyses decrease bias in estimates of direct genetic effects. Nature Genetics, 54(5), 581-592
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Within-sibship genome-wide association analyses decrease bias in estimates of direct genetic effects
Show others...
2022 (English)In: Nature Genetics, ISSN 1061-4036, E-ISSN 1546-1718, Vol. 54, no 5, p. 581-592Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Estimates from genome-wide association studies (GWAS) of unrelated individuals capture effects of inherited variation (direct effects), demography (population stratification, assortative mating) and relatives (indirect genetic effects). Family-based GWAS designs can control for demographic and indirect genetic effects, but large-scale family datasets have been lacking. We combined data from 178,086 siblings from 19 cohorts to generate population (between-family) and within-sibship (within-family) GWAS estimates for 25 phenotypes. Within-sibship GWAS estimates were smaller than population estimates for height, educational attainment, age at first birth, number of children, cognitive ability, depressive symptoms and smoking. Some differences were observed in downstream SNP heritability, genetic correlations and Mendelian randomization analyses. For example, the within-sibship genetic correlation between educational attainment and body mass index attenuated towards zero. In contrast, analyses of most molecular phenotypes (for example, low-density lipoprotein-cholesterol) were generally consistent. We also found within-sibship evidence of polygenic adaptation on taller height. Here, we illustrate the importance of family-based GWAS data for phenotypes influenced by demographic and indirect genetic effects. Within-sibship genome-wide association analyses using data from 178,076 siblings illustrate differences between population-based and within-sibship GWAS estimates for phenotypes influenced by demographic and indirect genetic effects.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Nature Publishing Group, 2022
National Category
Medical Genetics
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-476116 (URN)10.1038/s41588-022-01062-7 (DOI)000792566000004 ()35534559 (PubMedID)
Funder
The Research Council of Norway, 295989Wellcome trust
Available from: 2022-06-08 Created: 2022-06-08 Last updated: 2023-04-19Bibliographically approved
Ahlskog, R. (2021). Education and voter turnout revisited: Evidence from a Swedish twin sample with validated turnout data. Electoral Studies, 69, Article ID 102186.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Education and voter turnout revisited: Evidence from a Swedish twin sample with validated turnout data
2021 (English)In: Electoral Studies, ISSN 0261-3794, E-ISSN 1873-6890, Vol. 69, article id 102186Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The association between education and voter turnout is well-established in almost a century of research. The causal status of this correlation, however, is still subject to debate. Results in the previous literature differ substantially, and this may reflect both methodological differences and heterogeneous effects across populations or types of elections. This study addresses the question using a discordant twin design and variance decomposition methods with validated turnout data for both firstand second-order elections in a large sample of Swedish twins, paired with population-wide sibling data. Results show that education does not have an effect on national electoral turnout, but does have an effect on turnout in the European elections. Furthermore, the association between education and turnout is shown to be affected by substantial genetic confounding, which leaves a non-trivial amount of bias even in sibling based designs. This underscores the importance of taking genetic confounding seriously in observational research.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
ElsevierELSEVIER SCI LTD, 2021
Keywords
Education, Electoral, Turnout, Discordant twin design, Sibling design
National Category
Political Science (excluding Public Administration Studies and Globalisation Studies)
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-440895 (URN)10.1016/j.electstud.2020.102186 (DOI)000624082200007 ()
Funder
EU, European Research CouncilRiksbankens Jubileumsfond, P18-0782:1
Available from: 2021-04-28 Created: 2021-04-28 Last updated: 2024-01-15Bibliographically approved
Becker, J., Burik, C. A. P., Goldman, G., Wang, N., Jayashankar, H., Bennett, M., . . . Okbay, A. (2021). Resource profile and user guide of the Polygenic Index Repository. Nature Human Behaviour, 5(12), 1744-1758
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Resource profile and user guide of the Polygenic Index Repository
Show others...
2021 (English)In: Nature Human Behaviour, E-ISSN 2397-3374, Vol. 5, no 12, p. 1744-1758Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Benjamin et al. construct polygenic indexes (DNA-based predictors) for 47 phenotypes and make them available to researchers in 11 datasets. They also present a theoretical framework and estimator to help interpret analyses using polygenic indexes. Polygenic indexes (PGIs) are DNA-based predictors. Their value for research in many scientific disciplines is growing rapidly. As a resource for researchers, we used a consistent methodology to construct PGIs for 47 phenotypes in 11 datasets. To maximize the PGIs' prediction accuracies, we constructed them using genome-wide association studies-some not previously published-from multiple data sources, including 23andMe and UK Biobank. We present a theoretical framework to help interpret analyses involving PGIs. A key insight is that a PGI can be understood as an unbiased but noisy measure of a latent variable we call the 'additive SNP factor'. Regressions in which the true regressor is this factor but the PGI is used as its proxy therefore suffer from errors-in-variables bias. We derive an estimator that corrects for the bias, illustrate the correction, and make a Python tool for implementing it publicly available.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Springer NatureSpringer Nature, 2021
National Category
Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-463646 (URN)10.1038/s41562-021-01119-3 (DOI)000662849100002 ()34140656 (PubMedID)
Funder
EU, European Research Council, 647648Riksbankens Jubileumsfond, P18-0782:1Swedish Research Council, 2019-00244Swedish Research Council, 421-2013-1061
Available from: 2022-01-11 Created: 2022-01-11 Last updated: 2024-01-15Bibliographically approved
Ahlskog, R., Nyman, P. & Smrek, M. (2019). The Fiscal Effects of EU Migration to Slovakia. In: Miroslava Hlinčíková & Martina Sekulová (Ed.), Globe in Motion 2: Multiple Shades of Migration: Regional Perspectives (pp. 46-61). Bratislava: Institute of Ethnology and Social Anthropology, Slovak Academy of Sciences
Open this publication in new window or tab >>The Fiscal Effects of EU Migration to Slovakia
2019 (English)In: Globe in Motion 2: Multiple Shades of Migration: Regional Perspectives / [ed] Miroslava Hlinčíková & Martina Sekulová, Bratislava: Institute of Ethnology and Social Anthropology, Slovak Academy of Sciences , 2019, p. 46-61Chapter in book (Refereed)
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Bratislava: Institute of Ethnology and Social Anthropology, Slovak Academy of Sciences, 2019
Series
Ethnological Studies ; 36
National Category
Political Science (excluding Public Administration Studies and Globalisation Studies)
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-399718 (URN)10.31577/2019.9788097337209 (DOI)978-80-970975-9-2 (ISBN)978-80-973372-0-9 (ISBN)
Available from: 2019-12-16 Created: 2019-12-16 Last updated: 2020-08-20Bibliographically approved
Organisations
Identifiers
ORCID iD: ORCID iD iconorcid.org/0000-0002-4327-447X

Search in DiVA

Show all publications