Year: 2000 Source: Urban Studies, v.39, no.1, (July 2000), p.155-162 SIEC No: 20020489

Examines the purported impact of conventional socioeconomic & social environment factors on annual, state-level suicide rates. Results from an inductive fixed-effects analysis, of state-level time-series/cross-section data for the period 1985-95, do little to support Durkheim’s social causes hypothesis that aggregate socioeconomic factors matter in explaining state suicide rates. A possible source of heterogeneity-aggregation bias is identified, raising questions surrounding past interferences made in aggregate suicide research. The data & empirical method support a mounting sentiment of an abiding ecological fallacy in the suicide literature. Implications of this investigation call for a shift in research focus & method to a smaller unit of analysis. (25 refs)