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Schooling Impacts of Conditional Cash Transfers on Young Children: Evidence from Mexico

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  • Jere R. Behrman
  • Susan W. Parker
  • Petra E. Todd

Abstract

This article evaluates impacts of Oportunidades, a Mexican conditional cash transfer program, on educational outcomes 5.5 years after program initiation for a group of children who were ages 0-8 years preprogram. The oldest children within this age range received educational scholarships. The youngest children did not receive the scholarships because they had not yet started the third grade (the initial grade for scholarships) but were beneficiaries of the program's health components, which included nutritional supplements for children 24 months of age or younger. All of these children also may have benefited more generally from increased household income resulting from the program. This article investigates how the program differentially affected younger and older children within this age range and examines whether the early nutritional intervention led to improvements in subsequent educational performance. The program impact estimates are derived from a randomly assigned treatment and control group, which participated for different lengths of time in the program, and from a matched comparison group that had not participated prior to the collection of data in 2003. The empirical findings show positive program impacts on reducing ages at entering school for the younger children as well as on accumulated grades of schooling after 5.5 years of benefits for older children, with estimates implying a 1% reduction in the age of entry to primary and an increase in grades of schooling completed to date of about 8%-9%. (c) 2009 by The University of Chicago. All rights reserved.

Suggested Citation

  • Jere R. Behrman & Susan W. Parker & Petra E. Todd, 2009. "Schooling Impacts of Conditional Cash Transfers on Young Children: Evidence from Mexico," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 57(3), pages 439-477, April.
  • Handle: RePEc:ucp:ecdecc:v:57:y:2009:i:3:p:439-477
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. James J. Heckman & Hidehiko Ichimura & Petra E. Todd, 1997. "Matching As An Econometric Evaluation Estimator: Evidence from Evaluating a Job Training Programme," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 64(4), pages 605-654.
    2. Bouis, Howarth E. & Haddad, Lawrence J., 1992. "Are estimates of calorie-income fxelasticities too high? : A recalibration of the plausible range," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 39(2), pages 333-364, October.
    3. Juan Jose Diaz & Sudhanshu Handa, 2006. "An Assessment of Propensity Score Matching as a Nonexperimental Impact Estimator: Evidence from Mexico’s PROGRESA Program," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 41(2).
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    Cited by:

    1. Omar Mahmoud, Toman & Thiele, Rainer, 2009. "Does AIDS-related mortality reduce per-capita household income? Evidence from rural Zambia," Kiel Working Papers 1530, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW).
    2. Dirk Van de gaer & Joost Vandenbossche & José Luis Figueroa, 2014. "Children's Health Opportunities and Project Evaluation: Mexico's Oportunidades Program," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 28(2), pages 282-310.
    3. Mano, Yukichi & Suzuki, Aya, 2013. "Industrial Development through Takeovers and Exits: the Case of the Cut Flower Exporters in Ethiopia," Discussion Papers 2013-05, Graduate School of Economics, Hitotsubashi University.
    4. Aydemir, Abdurrahman B. & Kırdar, Murat G., 2017. "Quasi-experimental impact estimates of immigrant labor supply shocks: The role of treatment and comparison group matching and relative skill composition," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 98(C), pages 282-315.
    5. Manuela Angelucci, 2015. "Migration and Financial Constraints: Evidence from Mexico," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 97(1), pages 224-228, March.
    6. Jere R. Behrman & Jorge Gallardo-García & Susan W. Parker & Petra E. Todd & Viviana Vélez-Grajales, 2012. "Are conditional cash transfers effective in urban areas? Evidence from Mexico," Education Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 20(3), pages 233-259, February.
    7. Azer Efendiev & Pavel Sorokin, 2013. "Research in Social Organization as Factor Affecting Rural Economic Growth in Developing Society: Theoretical and Methodological Challenges," International Journal of Asian Social Science, Asian Economic and Social Society, vol. 3(10), pages 2236-2245, October.
    8. repec:eee:jjieco:v:33:y:2014:i:c:p:25-42 is not listed on IDEAS
    9. Mano, Yukichi & Akoten, John & Yoshino, Yutaka & Sonobe, Tetsushi, 2014. "Teaching KAIZEN to small business owners: An experiment in a metalworking cluster in Nairobi," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 33(C), pages 25-42.
    10. Justino, Patricia, 2016. "Supply and demand restrictions to education in conflict-affected countries: New research and future agendas," International Journal of Educational Development, Elsevier, vol. 47(C), pages 76-85.
    11. Figueroa, José Luis, 2014. "Distributional effects of Oportunidades on early child development," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 113(C), pages 42-49.
    12. Jere R. Behrman, 2011. "How much might human capital policies affect earnings inequalities and poverty?," Estudios de Economia, University of Chile, Department of Economics, vol. 38(1 Year 20), pages 8-41, June.
    13. Behrman, Jere R., 2010. "Investment in Education Inputs and Incentives," Handbook of Development Economics, Elsevier.
    14. Sawada, Yasuyuki & Ishii, Takaharu, 2012. "Do Community-Managed Schools Facilitate Social Capital Accumulation? Evidence from the COGES Project in Burkina Faso," Working Papers 42, JICA Research Institute.

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