Product boycott a good idea for controlling child labor? A theoretical investigation
AbstractA popular form of action to curb child labor and uphold international labor standards in general is a `product boycott' by consumers. There are labeling agencies that inform us if, for instance, a carpet or a hand-stitched soccer ball is free of child labor. The presence of a consumer boycott will typically mean that products tainted by child labor will command a lower price on the market than ones certified to be untainted. It is popularly presumed that such consumer activism is desirable. The paper formally investigates this presumption and shows that consumer product boycotts can, in a wide class of situations, have an adverse reaction that causes child labor to rise rather than fall. This happens under weak and plausible assumptions. Hence, there has to be much greater caution in the use of consumer activism, and one has to have much more detailed information about the context where child labor occurs, before using a boycott.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Indian Statistical Institute, New Delhi, India in its series Indian Statistical Institute, Planning Unit, New Delhi Discussion Papers with number 08-09.
Length: 19 pages
Date of creation: May 2008
Date of revision:
child labor; product boycott; labor standards;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- O12 - Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Microeconomic Analyses of Economic Development
- D10 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - General
- K00 - Law and Economics - - General - - - General (including Data Sources and Description)
- J20 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - General
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Uma Kambhampati, 2004. "Does Child Work Decrease with Parental Income?: The Luxury Axiom Revisited in India," Economics & Management Discussion Papers em-dp2004-02, Henley Business School, Reading University.
- Eric V. Edmonds & Nina Pavcnik, 2005. "Child Labor in the Global Economy," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 19(1), pages 199-220, Winter.
- Eric Edmonds, 2007.
- Ronald B. Davies, 2000.
"Abstinence from Child Labor and Profit Seeking,"
University of Oregon Economics Department Working Papers
2000-1, University of Oregon Economics Department, revised 01 Aug 2002.
- Elias Dinopoulos & Laixun Zhao, 2007.
"Child Labor and Globalization,"
Journal of Labor Economics,
University of Chicago Press, vol. 25, pages 553-579.
- Kaushik Basu, 2004.
"Child labor and the Law: Notes on Possible Pathologies,"
Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers
2052, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
- Basu, Kaushik, 2005. "Child labor and the law: Notes on possible pathologies," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 87(2), pages 169-174, May.
- Patrick M. Emerson & Shawn D. Knabb, 2007. "Fiscal Policy, Expectation Traps, And Child Labor," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 45(3), pages 453-469, 07.
- Ranjan, P., 1999.
""Credit Constraints and the Phenomenon of Child Labor","
98-99-12, California Irvine - School of Social Sciences.
- Ranjan, Priya, 2001. "Credit constraints and the phenomenon of child labor," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 64(1), pages 81-102, February.
- Dirk Krueger & Jessica Tjornhom Donohue, 2005.
"On The Distributional Consequences Of Child Labor Legislation,"
International Economic Review,
Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 46(3), pages 785-815, 08.
- Dirk Krueger & Jessica Tjornhom Donohue, 2004. "On the Distributional Consequences of Child Labor Legislation," NBER Working Papers 10347, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Dirk Krueger & Jessica Tjornhom Donohue, 2007. "On The Distributional Consequences Of Child Labor Legislation," Working Papers id:975, eSocialSciences.
- Arnab K. Basu & Nancy H. Chau & Ulrike Grote, 2006. "Guaranteed Manufactured without Child Labor: The Economics of Consumer Boycotts, Social Labeling and Trade Sanctions," Review of Development Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 10(3), pages 466-491, 08.
- Saqib Jafarey & Sajal Lahiri, 1999.
"Will trade sanctions reduce child labour? The role of credit markets,"
Economics Discussion Papers
500, University of Essex, Department of Economics.
- Jafarey, Saqib & Lahiri, Sajal, 2002. "Will trade sanctions reduce child labour?: The role of credit markets," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 68(1), pages 137-156, June.
- Matthias Doepke & Fabrizio Zilibotti, 2005.
"The macroeconomics of child labor regulation,"
354, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
- Jean Marie Baland & Cedric Duprez, 2008.
"Are Fair Trade Labels Effective Against Child Labor?,"
- Baland, Jean-Marie & Duprez, Cédric, 2007. "Are Fair Trade Labels Effective Against Child Labour?," CEPR Discussion Papers 6259, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- 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.
- Harald Grossmann & Jochen Michaelis, 2007. "Trade Sanctions and the Incidence of Child Labor," Review of Development Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 11(1), pages 49-62, 02.
- Basu, Kaushik & Van, Pham Hoang, 1998. "The Economics of Child Labor," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(3), pages 412-27, June.
- Sylvain E. Dessy & Stéphane Pallage, 2005. "A Theory of the Worst Forms of Child Labour," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 115(500), pages 68-87, 01.
- Doepke, Matthias & Zilibotti, Fabrizio, 2009.
"Do International Labor Standards Contribute to the Persistence of the Child Labor Problem?,"
IZA Discussion Papers
4214, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- Matthias Doepke & Fabrizio Zilibotti, 2010. "Do international labor standards contribute to the persistence of the child-labor problem?," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 15(1), pages 1-31, March.
- Matthias Doepke & Fabrizio Zilibotti, 2009. "Do International Labor Standards Contribute to the Persistence of the Child Labor Problem?," NBER Working Papers 15050, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Matthias Doepke & Fabrizio Zilibotti, 2010. "Do international labor standards contribute to the persistence of the child labor problem?," IEW - Working Papers 467, Institute for Empirical Research in Economics - University of Zurich.
- Fabrizio Zilibotti & Matthias Doepke, 2009. "Do International Labor Standards Contribute to the Persistence of the Child Labor Problem?," 2009 Meeting Papers 157, Society for Economic Dynamics.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Shamprasad M. Pujar).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.