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Wellesley College Economist to Publish Findings on Teen Birth Rate

WBUR’s Bob Oakes interviewed Wellesley College economist Phillip Levine on his work, which will be published in the Journal of Economic Perspectives tomorrow.

Teen birth rates are higher in communities with more “income inequality,” according to research performed out of .

Bob Oakes, anchor for WBUR’s “Morning Edition” newscast, interviewed Wellesley College economist Phillip Levine, who sought to determine why teen birth rates vary drastically depending on location in the United States.

Levine, along with research partner University of Maryland economist Melissa Kearney, found that poor teens in an area of high income inequality are more likely to give birth for a variety of reasons.

“What really seems to exacerbate the problem is when you’re poor and you live in a place where there’s a great degree of income inequality,” Levine told Oakes on WBUR.com. “So if you’re poor in a high inequality location, then you’re really much more likely to give birth as a teenager.”

Levine and Kearney's findings will be published in tomorrow's edition of the Journal of Economic Perspectives.

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