Transporting stochastic direct and indirect effects to new populations

Kara E. Rudolph, Jonathan Levy, Mark J. van der Laan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Transported mediation effects may contribute to understanding how interventions work differently when applied to new populations. However, we are not aware of any estimators for such effects. Thus, we propose two doubly robust, efficient estimators of transported stochastic (also called randomized interventional) direct and indirect effects. We demonstrate their finite sample properties in a simulation study. We then apply the preferred substitution estimator to longitudinal data from the Moving to Opportunity Study, a large-scale housing voucher experiment, to transport stochastic indirect effect estimates of voucher receipt in childhood on subsequent risk of mental health or substance use disorder mediated through parental employment across sites, thereby gaining understanding of drivers of the site differences.

Original languageEnglish (US)
StateAccepted/In press - Jan 1 2020
Externally publishedYes


  • external validity
  • generalizability
  • instrumental variables
  • mediation
  • randomized interventional indirect effects
  • stochastic indirect effects
  • targeted maximum likelihood estimation
  • transportability

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Statistics and Probability
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Immunology and Microbiology(all)
  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
  • Applied Mathematics


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