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Evidence from Maternity Leave Expansions of the Impact of Maternal Care on Early Child Development

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  • Michael Baker
  • Kevin Milligan

Abstract

We study the impact of maternal care on early child development using an expansion in Canadian maternity leave entitlements. Following the leave expansion, mothers who took leave spent 48–58 percent more time not working in their children’s first year of life. This extra maternal care primarily crowded out home-based care by unlicensed nonrelatives and replaced full-time work. Our estimates suggest a weak impact of this increase in maternal care on indicators of child development. For example, measures of temperament and motor and social development show changes that are small and statistically insignificant.

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File URL: http://jhr.uwpress.org/cgi/reprint/45/1/1
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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by University of Wisconsin Press in its journal Journal of Human Resources.

Volume (Year): 45 (2010)
Issue (Month): 1 ()
Pages:

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Handle: RePEc:uwp:jhriss:v:45:y:2010:i:1:p1-32

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Web page: http://jhr.uwpress.org/

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  1. Michael Baker & Kevin Milligan, 2005. "How Does Job-Protected Maternity Leave Affect Mothers' Employment and Infant Health?," NBER Working Papers 11135, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Milligan, Kevin & Stabile, Mark, 2007. "The integration of child tax credits and welfare: Evidence from the Canadian National Child Benefit program," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 91(1-2), pages 305-326, February.
  3. Michael Baker & Jonathan Gruber & Kevin Milligan, 2006. "Universal Childcare, Maternal Labor Supply, and Family Well-Being," Working Papers id:547, eSocialSciences.
  4. Jane Waldfogel & Wen-Jui Han & Jeanne Brooks-Gunn, 2002. "The effects of early maternal employment on child cognitive development," Demography, Springer, vol. 39(2), pages 369-392, May.
  5. Baker, Michael & Milligan, Kevin, 2008. "Maternal employment, breastfeeding, and health: Evidence from maternity leave mandates," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(4), pages 871-887, July.
  6. Marianne Bertrand & Esther Duflo & Sendhil Mullainathan, 2002. "How Much Should We Trust Differences-in-Differences Estimates?," NBER Working Papers 8841, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Katherine A. Magnuson & Christopher J. Ruhm & Jane Waldfogel, 2004. "Does Prekindergarten Improve School Preparation and Performance?," NBER Working Papers 10452, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Raquel Bernal & Michael P. Keane, 2011. "Child Care Choices and Children’s Cognitive Achievement: The Case of Single Mothers," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 29(3), pages 459 - 512.
  9. James J. Heckman & Jora Stixrud & Sergio Urzua, 2006. "The Effects of Cognitive and Noncognitive Abilities on Labor Market Outcomes and Social Behavior," NBER Working Papers 12006, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Loeb, Susanna & Bridges, Margaret & Bassok, Daphna & Fuller, Bruce & Rumberger, Russell W., 2007. "How much is too much? The influence of preschool centers on children's social and cognitive development," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 26(1), pages 52-66, February.
  11. Heckman, James J. & Lalonde, Robert J. & Smith, Jeffrey A., 1999. "The economics and econometrics of active labor market programs," Handbook of Labor Economics, in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 31, pages 1865-2097 Elsevier.
  12. John M. Barron & Mark C. Berger & Dan A. Black, 2006. "Selective Counteroffers," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 24(3), pages 385-410, July.
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