Prison, Mental Health, Family Spillovers

14 October 2021 | 15:00 — 16:00

FBK-IRVAPP is pleased to invite you to the following seminar: Prison, Mental Health, Family Spillovers

With the participation of Laura Khoury

Language: the seminar is held in English.

Abstract: Mental health is known to impact multiple longer run education and labor market outcomes. Correlational evidence has shown that the prevalence of mental health issues is much higher in the inmate population than in the general population, but it remains silent on causality. We exploit the strengths of the Norwegian setting and the richness of the data to accurately measure the impact of incarceration on the health of the defendants and their family members. First, we use an event-study design around the case decision event. The event study is complemented with an instrumental variable (IV) strategy that takes advantage of the random assignment of criminal cases to judges who differ in their leniency. Both methods consistently show that the positive correlation is misleading: incarceration has a negative impact on the prevalence of mental health disorders among defendants as measured by mental-health related visits to health care professionals. We further demonstrate that this effect lasts post release and is unlikely to be fully driven by a shift in health care demand. Family members also experience positive spillovers on their mental health, especially spouses.

The seminar will be held on the web conference platform Google meet.


  • Speaker
    Laura Khoury is a Postdoctoral Researcher at the Centre for Experimental Research on Fairness, Inequality and Rationality (FAIR) at the Norwegian School of Economics (NHH). Laura completed her PhD in September 2019 at the Paris School of Economics under the supervision of Luc Behaghel. She received the 2020 Best PhD Award of the French Economic Association (AFSE), the 2nd prize of the Best PhD Award in Economics from the Chancellerie des Universités, and the 2nd prize of the Best PhD Award on Labor Markets from the French Unemployment Insurance (Pôle Emploi).


Registration to this event is mandatory.

Registration closed on 14/10/2021.

Registration for this event is mandatory.

Registration closed on 14/10/2021.

The registration is free of charge. You will receive an invitation through google calendar the day before the seminar to facilitate access to the virtual room.

Privacy Notice

Pursuant to art. 13 of EU Regulation No. 2016/679 – General Data Protection Regulation and as detailed in the Privacy Policy for FBK event’s participants, we inform you that the event may be recorded and disclosed on the FBK institutional channels. In order not to be filmed or recorded, you can always disable the webcam and/or mute the microphone during virtual events or inform the FBK staff who organize the public event beforehand.