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The Early Bird gets the Worm? Birth Order Effects in a Dynamic Model of the Family

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Abstract

Birth order effects are found in empirical work, but lack solid theoretical foundations in economics. Our new modeling approach to children provides this. Each child’s needs change as it grows, and births are sequential. Each child has the same genetic make-up and parents do not favor one child over the other. Parental child care time lowers the caregiver’s current and future wages; this opportunity cost varies across time. Benefits also vary, and when parental child care is a public input co-resident children allow economies of scope in child care. Birth order effects emerge from the changing benefits and costs.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Department of Economics, University of Victoria in its series Department Discussion Papers with number 0801.

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Length: 35 pages
Date of creation: 23 Oct 2008
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:vic:vicddp:0801

Note: ISSN 1914-2838
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Keywords: Birth order; children; family;

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  1. Angrist, Joshua & Lavy, Victor & Schlosser, Analia, 2006. "New Evidence on the Causal Link between the Quantity and Quality of Children," CEPR Discussion Papers 5668, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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  6. Joseph Price, 2008. "Parent-Child Quality Time: Does Birth Order Matter?," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 43(1).
  7. Ruhm, Christopher J., 2000. "Parental leave and child health," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 19(6), pages 931-960, November.
  8. Steven Stern & Maxim Engers, . "Long-Term Care and Family Bargaining," Virginia Economics Online Papers 320, University of Virginia, Department of Economics.
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  11. S Black & Paul Devereux & Kjell Salvanes, 2005. "The More the Merrier? The Effect of Family Size and Birth Order on Childrens Education," CEE Discussion Papers 0050, Centre for the Economics of Education, LSE.
  12. Kessler, Daniel, 1991. "Birth Order, Family Size, and Achievement: Family Structure and Wage Determination," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 9(4), pages 413-26, October.
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