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Children in home worker households in Pakistan and Indonesia

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Author Info

  • Santosh Mehrotra
  • Mario Biggeri

Abstract

Purpose – The aim of the paper is to understand whether children in home-worker (HW) households in Pakistan and Indonesia are more likely to work than other children, and, if so, how this impacts their capabilities. The paper also aims to outline some policy implications for the two countries. Design/methodology/approach – The data are drawn from two ad hoc surveys and country studies carried out in Pakistan and Indonesia in 2000/2001. The paper examines the incidence and reasons of child work and child schooling in home-worker households, the work conditions, and gender issues. A bivariate probit is applied to analyse the determinants of child activity status. Findings – Children from HW households have a higher probability of working. There is evidence of the feminisation of home work from childhood. This is dramatic in Pakistan while little evidence is found for Indonesia. In Pakistani urban slums the majority of children are working, but in Indonesia they are in school. The mother's education and per capita income/expenditure or assets in the household are important determinants of the child's activity status. Research limitations/implications – The model cannot use the control group for econometric analysis since the number of households and children interviewed (although randomly chosen) are not sufficient. Practical implications – Collective action plays a role in the reduction of children “only working”. The number of hours that children work in Pakistan suggests that their ability to do school-related activities is likely to be impacted. Originality/value – Although child labour is common in home-based manufacturing activities in the informal sector in most Asian developing countries research on child labour remains scarce. This paper contributes to this area of research.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Emerald Group Publishing in its journal International Journal of Manpower.

Volume (Year): 31 (2010)
Issue (Month): 2 ( May)
Pages: 208-231

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Handle: RePEc:eme:ijmpps:v:31:y:2010:i:2:p:208-231

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Related research

Keywords: Children (age groups); Indonesia; Labour; Pakistan; Subcontracting;

References

References listed on IDEAS
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  1. Prugl, Elisabeth & Tinker, Irene, 1997. "Microentrepreneurs and homeworkers: Convergent categories," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 25(9), pages 1471-1482, September.
  2. Christopher Heady, 2000. "What is the Effect of Child Labour on Learning Achievement? Evidence from Ghana," Innocenti Working Papers inwopa00/7, UNICEF Innocenti Research Centre.
  3. Cigno, Alessandro & Rosati, Furio Camillo, 2005. "The Economics of Child Labour," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780199264452.
  4. World Bank, 2002. "World Development Indicators 2002," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 13921, October.
  5. F. Rosati & M. Rossi, 2001. "Children's Working Hours, School Enrolment and Human Capital Accumulation: Evidence from Pakistan and Nicaragua," UCW Working Paper 8, Understanding Children's Work (UCW Programme).
  6. Mehrotra, Santosh & Biggeri, Mario, 2005. "Can industrial outwork enhance homeworkers' capabilities? Evidence from clusters in South Asia," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 33(10), pages 1735-1757, October.
  7. M.Biggeri & L.Guarcello & S.Lyon & F.Rosati, 2003. "The Puzzle of 'Idle' Children: Neither in School nor performing Economic Activity: Evidence from six Countries," UCW Working Paper 5, Understanding Children's Work (UCW Programme).
  8. Carr, Marilyn & Chen, Martha Alter, 2002. "Globalization and the informal economy : how global trade and investment impact on the working poor," ILO Working Papers 354172, International Labour Organization.
  9. Cameron,A. Colin & Trivedi,Pravin K., 2005. "Microeconometrics," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521848053, October.
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