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Long- term poverty and child development in the United States: Results from the NLSY

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  • S. Korenman
  • J. E. Miller
  • J. E. Sjaastad
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    Abstract

    The authors describe developmental deficits in early childhood associated with long-term poverty in the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth (NLSY). They compare estimates of the effects of long-term poverty (based on a thirteen-year average of income) to estimates of the effects of poverty based on a single year of income (at the time of developmental assessment). They find substantial developmental deficits among children who, on average, are poor over a number of years relative to those who are not. These deficits are approximately twice as large according to the long-term income measure as compared to those based on the single- year measure, and are not explained by differences in maternal education, family structure, maternal behaviors during pregnancy, infant health, nutritional status, or age of mother at first birth. However, an index of the home environment accounts for one-third to one-half of the developmental disadvantages (net of other factors) of children who experience long-term poverty.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by University of Wisconsin Institute for Research on Poverty in its series Institute for Research on Poverty Discussion Papers with number 1044-94.

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    Handle: RePEc:wop:wispod:1044-94

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    1. Robert Haveman & Barbara Wolfe, 1993. "Children's Prospects and Children's Policy," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, American Economic Association, vol. 7(4), pages 153-174, Fall.
    2. Sheldon Danziger & Jonathan Stern, 1990. "Causes and Consequences of Child Poverty in the United States," Innocenti Occasional Papers, Economic Policy Series, UNICEF Innocenti Research Centre iopeps90/35, UNICEF Innocenti Research Centre.
    3. Mary Jo Bane & David T. Ellwood, 1986. "Slipping into and out of Poverty: The Dynamics of Spells," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 21(1), pages 1-23.
    4. Zimmerman, David J, 1992. "Regression toward Mediocrity in Economic Stature," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, American Economic Association, vol. 82(3), pages 409-29, June.
    5. Desai, S. & Michael, R.T. & Chase-Landale, P.L., 1990. "The Home Environment : A Mechanism Through which Maternal Employment Affects Child Development," University of Chicago - Economics Research Center, Chicago - Economics Research Center 90-9, Chicago - Economics Research Center.
    6. Janet Currie & Nancy Cole, 1991. "Does Participation in Transfer Programs During Pregnancy Improve Birth Weight?," NBER Working Papers 3832, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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