Estimating the impact of social isolation on subjective health in Europe

Emiliano Sironi, Amelie Nadine Wolff

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We investigate the relationship between social isolation and subjective health, considering that this relationship is potentially affected by endogeneity due to the presence of self-reported measures. Thus, if an increase in social isolation may impact the perception on health, alternative paths of causality may also be hypothesized. Using data from round 7 of the European Social Survey, we estimate an instrumental variable model in which isolation is explained as being a member of an ethnic minority and having experienced some serious family conflicts in the past. Our results confirm that changes in social isolation influence subjective general health. In particular, greater isolation produces a strong and significant deterioration of the perceived health status. With respect to the literature on social isolation and health, we try to advance it by supporting a path of causality running from social isolation to subjective health.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-16
Number of pages16
Publication statusPublished - 2021


  • health


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