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You get what you pay for: Schooling incentives and child labor

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  • Edmonds, Eric V.
  • Shrestha, Maheshwor

Abstract

Can schooling promotion deter child participation in hazardous forms of child labor? We examine two interventions intended to promote schooling and deter child labor for children associated with carpet factories in Kathmandu. The first intervention provides scholarships for school-related expenses. The second provides the scholarship and an in-kind stipend conditional on school attendance. Paying for schooling expenses promotes schooling but only at the beginning of the school year when most schooling expenses occur. The scholarship combined with the conditional stipend increases school attendance rates by 11%, decreases grade failure rates by 46%, and reduces carpet weaving by 48%. Financial support lasted one year. Effects on schooling and weaving do not persist past the year of support. “You get what you pay for” when schooling incentives are used to combat hazardous child labor.

Suggested Citation

  • Edmonds, Eric V. & Shrestha, Maheshwor, 2014. "You get what you pay for: Schooling incentives and child labor," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 111(C), pages 196-211.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:deveco:v:111:y:2014:i:c:p:196-211
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jdeveco.2014.09.005
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    2. Elena del Rey & Sergi Jiménez-Martín & Judit Vall-Castello, 2015. "The Effect of Changes in the Statutory Minimum Working Age on Educational, Labor And Health Outcomes," Working Papers 834, Barcelona Graduate School of Economics.
    3. Pierre ANDRE & Esther DELESALLE & Christelle DUMAS, 2019. "Returns to farm child labor in Tanzania," LIDAM Discussion Papers IRES 2019005, Université catholique de Louvain, Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales (IRES).
    4. Kozhaya, Mireille & Martinez Flores, Fernanda, 2020. "Schooling and child labor: Evidence from Mexico's full-time school program," Ruhr Economic Papers 851, RWI - Leibniz-Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-University Bochum, TU Dortmund University, University of Duisburg-Essen.
    5. Kenneth A. Swinnerton, 2016. "How do adult returns to schooling affect children’s enrollment?," IZA World of Labor, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA), pages 305-305, October.
    6. Jonathan Colmer, 2021. "Rainfall Variability, Child Labor, and Human Capital Accumulation in Rural Ethiopia," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, John Wiley & Sons, vol. 103(3), pages 858-877, May.
    7. Prachi Pundir & Ashrita Saran & Howard White & Ramya Subrahmanian & Jill Adona, 2020. "Interventions for reducing violence against children in low‐ and middle‐income countries: An evidence and gap map," Campbell Systematic Reviews, John Wiley & Sons, vol. 16(4), December.
    8. Vinish Shrestha & Rashesh Shrestha, 0. "Multigenerational Effects of Education Reform: Mother’s Education and Children’s Human Capital in Nepal," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 34(3), pages 698-729.
    9. Jacobus de Hoop & Jed Friedman & Eeshani Kandpal & Furio C. Rosati, 2019. "Child Schooling and Child Work in the Presence of a Partial Education Subsidy," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 54(2), pages 503-531.
    10. Vinish Shrestha & Rashesh Shrestha, 2017. "Intergenerational effect of education reform program and maternal education on children's educational and labor outcomes: evidence from Nepal," Departmental Working Papers 2017-07, The Australian National University, Arndt-Corden Department of Economics.
    11. Kim, Hyoungjong & Rhee, Dong-Eun, 2019. "Toilets for education: Evidence from Kenya’s primary school-level data," International Journal of Educational Development, Elsevier, vol. 70(C), pages 1-1.
    12. Teresa Molina Millan & Karen Macours, 2017. "Attrition in randomized control trials: Using tracking information to correct bias," NOVAFRICA Working Paper Series wp1702, Universidade Nova de Lisboa, Faculdade de Economia, NOVAFRICA.
    13. Valentina Rotondi & Francesco Billari, 2017. "Mobile Money and School Participation: Evidence from Low Income Countries," Working Papers 109, "Carlo F. Dondena" Centre for Research on Social Dynamics (DONDENA), Università Commerciale Luigi Bocconi.
    14. André, Pierre & Delesalle, Esther & Dumas, Christelle, 2021. "Returns to farm child labor in Tanzania," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 138(C).
    15. Dammert, Ana C. & de Hoop, Jacobus & Mvukiyehe, Eric & Rosati, Furio C., 2018. "Effects of public policy on child labor: Current knowledge, gaps, and implications for program design," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 110(C), pages 104-123.
    16. Vinish Shrestha & Rashesh Shrestha, 2017. "Intergenerational effect of education reform: mother's education and children's human capital in Nepal," Working Papers 2017-05, Towson University, Department of Economics, revised Oct 2017.
    17. Guirkinger, Catherine & Platteau, Jean-Philippe, 2019. "The dynamics of family systems: lessons from past and present times," CEPR Discussion Papers 13570, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    18. Erten, Bilge & Keskin, Pinar, 2019. "Compulsory schooling for whom? The role of gender, poverty, and religiosity," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 72(C), pages 187-203.
    19. Kozhaya, Mireille & Martínez Flores, Fernanda, 2020. "Child Education and Work: Evidence from Mexico's Full-Time School Program," VfS Annual Conference 2020 (Virtual Conference): Gender Economics 224567, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Education; School subsidies; Conditional transfers; School enrollment; Child labor; Labor standards; Nepal;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • J22 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Time Allocation and Labor Supply
    • J88 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor Standards - - - Public Policy
    • O15 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Economic Development: Human Resources; Human Development; Income Distribution; Migration

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