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The Consequences of Child Soldiering

  • Christopher Blattman

    (Yale University, Political Science and Economics)

  • Jeannie Annan

    (Yale University, School of Medicine and CIRA)

Little is known about the impacts of military service on human capital and labor market outcomes due to an absence of data as well as sample selection: recruits are self-selected, screened, and selectively survive. We examine the case of Uganda, where rebel recruitment methods provide exogenous variation in conscription. Economic and educational impacts are widespread and persistent: schooling falls by nearly a year, skilled employment halves, and earnings drop by a third. Military service seems to be a poor substitute for schooling. Psychological distress is evident among those exposed to severe war violence and is not limited to ex-combatants. (c) 2010 The President and Fellows of Harvard College and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

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Article provided by MIT Press in its journal The Review of Economics and Statistics.

Volume (Year): 92 (2010)
Issue (Month): 4 (November)
Pages: 882-898

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Handle: RePEc:tpr:restat:v:92:y:2010:i:4:p:882-898
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