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What Happened to Child Labor in Indonesia during the Economic Crisis : The Trade-off between School and Work

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Author Info

  • Agus Priyambada

    (SMERU)

  • Asep Suryahadi
  • Sudarno Sumarto

Abstract

Although in general less prevalent than other developing countries at similar stage of development, the problem of child labor in Indonesia is significant. Like in other countries, this study finds that there is a strong link between the child labor phenomenon and poverty. The profile of child labor largely mirrors the profile of poverty. Furthermore, poverty is found as an important determinant of working for children. However, working does not always completely eliminate a childs opportunity to obtain formal education. In fact, children from poor households can still go to school by undertaking part-time work to pay for their education, implying that banning working for these children may force them to drop out of schools instead. Since the phenomenon of child labor is strongly associated with and determined by poverty, the most effective policy for eliminating child labor is through poverty alleviation. Other policies that can foster the rate of reduction in child labor are to make it easier for children from poor families to access education and to increase the opportunity cost of working by improving the quality of education to increase the rate of return to education.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by East Asian Bureau of Economic Research in its series Labor Economics Working Papers with number 22535.

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Date of creation: Jan 2005
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Handle: RePEc:eab:laborw:22535

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Keywords: child; labour;

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References

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  1. Blunch, Niels-Hugo & Verner, Dorte, 2000. "Revisiting the link between poverty and child labor - the Ghanaian experience," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2488, The World Bank.
  2. Lisa Cameron, 2001. "The Impact Of The Indonesian Financial Crisis On Children: An Analysis Using The 100 Villages Data," Bulletin of Indonesian Economic Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 37(1), pages 43-64.
  3. Sandra E. Black & Paul J. Devereux & Kjell G. Salvanes, 2003. "Why the Apple Doesn't Fall Far: Understanding Intergenerational Transmission of Human Capital," NBER Working Papers 10066, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Glewwe, Paul & Hall, Gillette, 1998. "Are some groups more vulnerable to macroeconomic shocks than others? Hypothesis tests based on panel data from Peru," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 56(1), pages 181-206, June.
  5. Alan B. Krueger, 1996. "Observations on International Labor Standards and Trade," NBER Working Papers 5632, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Ranjan, Priya, 2001. "Credit constraints and the phenomenon of child labor," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 64(1), pages 81-102, February.
  7. Ray, Ranjan, 2000. "Child Labor, Child Schooling, and Their Interaction with Adult Labor: Empirical Evidence for Peru and Pakistan," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 14(2), pages 347-67, May.
  8. Asep Suryahadi & Wenefrida Widyanti & Sudarno Sumarto, 2003. "Short-term poverty dynamics in rural Indonesia during the economic crisis," Journal of International Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 15(2), pages 133-144.
  9. Edmonds, Eric V., 2007. "Child Labor," IZA Discussion Papers 2606, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  10. Ravallion, Martin & Wodon, Quentin, 2000. "Does Child Labour Displace Schooling? Evidence on Behavioural Responses to an Enrollment Subsidy," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 110(462), pages C158-75, March.
  11. Cameron, Lisa A., 2002. "Did social safety net scholarships reduce drop-out rates during the Indonesian economic crisis?," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2800, The World Bank.
  12. Arnaud Chevalier, 2004. "Parental Education and Child’s Education - A Natural Experiment," Working Papers 200414, School Of Economics, University College Dublin.
  13. Rajeev Dehejia & Roberta Gatti, 2002. "Child Labor: The Role of Income Variability and Access to Credit Across Countries," NBER Working Papers 9018, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  14. Asep Suryahadi & Sudarno Sumarto, 2003. "Poverty and Vulnerability in Indonesia Before and After the Economic Crisis," Asian Economic Journal, East Asian Economic Association, vol. 17(1), pages 45-64, 03.
  15. Dreze, Jean & Srinivasan, P. V., 1997. "Widowhood and poverty in rural India: Some inferences from household survey data," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 54(2), pages 217-234, December.
  16. Canagarajah, Sudharshan & Coulombe, Harold, 1997. "Child labor and schooling in Ghana," Policy Research Working Paper Series 1844, The World Bank.
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