The Relationship Between Financial Hardships and the Development of Risk-Taking Behaviors: The Protective Role of Extracurricular Activities

Alexander W. O'Donnell, Gerry Redmond, Jennifer Skattebol, Jacqueline Allen, Cathy Thomson, Colin MacDougall

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract


Past research has demonstrated an association between financial hardships and risk-taking behaviors (defined as delinquent or transgressive acts). However, this effect may differ based upon the provision of protective spaces, like those offered in extracurricular activities. In the current study, we examined the longitudinal effect of financial hardships on risk-taking in a sample of Australian adolescents (N = 3,852). We found experiences of financial hardship at the age of 12/13 predicted higher risk-taking 2 years later. Further, a longitudinal indirect effect was observed, where financial hardships were associated with higher risk-taking 4 years later via increased exposure to risk-taking peers. Non-sporting activity participation (e.g., debating, dance) was found to offset the risks associated with experiencing financial hardships. Participation in sports was not significantly related to any of our outcomes. Our data highlights how the provision of non-sporting activities may improve behavioral outcomes, especially among more financially disadvantaged adolescents.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages29
JournalYouth and Society
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 29 Oct 2022

Keywords

  • risk-taking
  • peers
  • social norms
  • agency
  • delinquency
  • extracurricular activities
  • organized activities
  • sport
  • non-sport

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'The Relationship Between Financial Hardships and the Development of Risk-Taking Behaviors: The Protective Role of Extracurricular Activities'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this