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Income shocks and gender gaps in education: Evidence from Uganda

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  • Björkman-Nyqvist, Martina

Abstract

This paper uses exogenous variation in rainfall across districts in Uganda to estimate the causal effects of household income shocks on children's enrollment and academic performance conditional on gender. I find negative deviations in rainfall from the long-term mean to have negative and highly significant effects on female enrollment in primary schools and the effect grows stronger for older girls. I find no effect of rainfall variation on the enrollment of boys and young girls. Moreover, I find that when schooling is free of charge and both marginal boys and girls are enrolled, a negative income shock has an adverse effect on the test scores of female students while boys are not affected. The results imply that households respond to income shocks by varying the amount of schooling and resources provided to girls while boys are to a large extent sheltered — a finding consistent with a model where parents' values of child labor differ across sexes.

Suggested Citation

  • Björkman-Nyqvist, Martina, 2013. "Income shocks and gender gaps in education: Evidence from Uganda," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 105(C), pages 237-253.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:deveco:v:105:y:2013:i:c:p:237-253
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jdeveco.2013.07.013
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Lucia Corno & Alessandra Voena, 2016. "Selling daughters: age of marriage, income shocks and the bride price tradition," IFS Working Papers W16/08, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
    2. Flatø, Martin & Kotsadam, Andreas, 2014. "Droughts and Gender Bias in Infant Mortality in Sub-Saharan Africa," Memorandum 02/2014, Oslo University, Department of Economics.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Rainfall; Education; Test scores; Gender;

    JEL classification:

    • D1 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior
    • J16 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Gender; Non-labor Discrimination
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
    • D13 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Household Production and Intrahouse Allocation

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