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Mortality Risks, Education and Child Labour

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  • Baland, Jean-Marie
  • Estevan, Fernanda

Abstract

In this paper, we investigate the role of young adult mortality on child labour and educational decisions. We argue that mortality risks are a major source of risks in returns to education in developing countries. We show that, in the absence of appropriate insurance mechanisms, the level of child labour is inefficient, but it can be too high or too low. It is too high when parents are not very altruistic or anticipate positive transfers from their children in the future. Uncertain returns to education, endogenous mortality or imperfect capital markets unambiguously increase child labour. When the level of child labour is inefficiently high, we also show that a cash transfer conditional on child's schooling can always restore efficiency regarding child labour.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 5972.

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Date of creation: Dec 2006
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Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:5972

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Keywords: child labour; conditional cash transfers; education; mortality risks; old-age security motive;

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References

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  1. Blackorby, Charles & Bossert, Walter & Donaldson, David, 1995. "Intertemporal Population Ethics: Critical-Level Utilitarian Principles," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 63(6), pages 1303-20, November.
  2. Pouliot, William, 2006. "Introducing uncertainty into Baland and Robinson's model of child labour," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 79(1), pages 264-272, February.
  3. Jean-Marie Baland & James A. Robinson, 2000. "Is Child Labor Inefficient?," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 108(4), pages 663-679, August.
  4. Lillard, L-A & Willis, R-J, 1997. "Motives for Intergenerational Transfers. Evidence from Malaysia," Papers 97-04, RAND - Reprint Series.
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  8. Orley Ashenfelter & Colm Harmon & Hessel Oosterbeek, 2000. "A Review of Estimates of the Schooling/Earnings Relationship, with Tests for Publication Bias," NBER Working Papers 7457, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  10. Anders Forslund & Oskar Nordström Stans, 2006. "Swedish Youth Labour Market Policies Revisited," Vierteljahrshefte zur Wirtschaftsforschung / Quarterly Journal of Economic Research, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research, vol. 75(3), pages 168-185.
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  13. Ravallion, Martin & Wodon, Quentin, 1999. "Does child labor displace schooling? - evidence on behavioral responses to an enrollment subsidy," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2116, The World Bank.
  14. Holger Strulik, 2004. "Child mortality, child labour and economic development," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 114(497), pages 547-568, 07.
  15. Esther Duflo, 2001. "Schooling and Labor Market Consequences of School Construction in Indonesia: Evidence from an Unusual Policy Experiment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(4), pages 795-813, September.
  16. Levhari, David & Weiss, Yoram, 1974. "The Effect of Risk on the Investment in Human Capital," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 64(6), pages 950-63, December.
  17. De Vos, Susan, 1985. "An Old-Age Security Incentive for Children in the Philippines and Taiwan," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 33(4), pages 793-814, July.
  18. Bedi, Arjun S. & Gaston, Noel, 1999. "Using variation in schooling availability to estimate educational returns for Honduras," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 18(1), pages 107-116, February.
  19. Edmonds, Eric V., 2006. "Child labor and schooling responses to anticipated income in South Africa," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 81(2), pages 386-414, December.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Thomas Baudin, 2012. "The Optimal Trade-Off Between Quality and Quantity with Unknown Number of Survivors," Mathematical Population Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 19(2), pages 94-113, April.
  2. Landmann, Andreas & Frölich, Markus, 2013. "Can Microinsurance Help Prevent Child Labor? An Impact Evaluation from Pakistan," IZA Discussion Papers 7337, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  3. Lindskog, Annika, 2011. "Does a Diversification Motive Influence Children’s School Entry in the Ethiopian Highlands?," Working Papers in Economics 494, University of Gothenburg, Department of Economics.
  4. Di Maio, Michele & Nandi, Tushar K., 2013. "The effect of the Israeli–Palestinian conflict on child labor and school attendance in the West Bank," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 100(1), pages 107-116.

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