IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/wly/quante/v13y2022i2p425-465.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

Child work and cognitive development: Results from four low to middle income countries

Author

Listed:
  • Michael Keane
  • Sonya Krutikova
  • Timothy Neal

Abstract

We study the impact of child work on cognitive development in four Low‐ and Middle‐Income Countries. We advance the literature by using cognitive test scores collected regardless of school attendance. We also address a key gap in the literature by controlling for children's complete time allocation budget. This allows us to estimate effects of different types of work, like chores and market/farm work, relative to specific alternative time‐uses, like school or study or play/leisure. Our results show child work is more detrimental to child development to the extent that it crowds out school/study time rather than leisure. We also show the adverse effect of time spent on domestic chores is similar to time spent on market and farm work, provided they both crowd out school/study time. Thus, policies to enhance child development should target a shift from all forms of work toward educational activities.

Suggested Citation

  • Michael Keane & Sonya Krutikova & Timothy Neal, 2022. "Child work and cognitive development: Results from four low to middle income countries," Quantitative Economics, Econometric Society, vol. 13(2), pages 425-465, May.
  • Handle: RePEc:wly:quante:v:13:y:2022:i:2:p:425-465
    DOI: 10.3982/QE1745
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: https://doi.org/10.3982/QE1745
    Download Restriction: no

    File URL: https://libkey.io/10.3982/QE1745?utm_source=ideas
    LibKey link: if access is restricted and if your library uses this service, LibKey will redirect you to where you can use your library subscription to access this item
    ---><---

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Amy Hsin & Christina Felfe, 2014. "When Does Time Matter? Maternal Employment, Children’s Time With Parents, and Child Development," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 51(5), pages 1867-1894, October.
    2. Emmanuel Skoufias & Susan Wendy Parker, 2001. "Conditional Cash Transfers and Their Impact on Child Work and Schooling: Evidence from the PROGRESA Program in Mexico," Economía Journal, The Latin American and Caribbean Economic Association - LACEA, vol. 0(Fall 2001), pages 45-96, August.
    3. Joshua D. Angrist & Parag A. Pathak & Christopher R. Walters, 2013. "Explaining Charter School Effectiveness," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 5(4), pages 1-27, October.
    4. Heady, Christopher, 2003. "The Effect of Child Labor on Learning Achievement," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 31(2), pages 385-398, February.
    5. Virginia Morrow & Uma Vennam, 2012. "Children's responses to risk in agricultural work in Andhra Pradesh, India," Development in Practice, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 22(4), pages 549-561, June.
    6. Kaushik Basu, 1999. "Child Labor: Cause, Consequence, and Cure, with Remarks on International Labor Standards," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 37(3), pages 1083-1119, September.
    7. Abhijeet Singh, 2020. "Learning More with Every Year: School Year Productivity and International Learning Divergence," Journal of the European Economic Association, European Economic Association, vol. 18(4), pages 1770-1813.
    8. Mario Fiorini & Michael P. Keane, 2014. "How the Allocation of Children's Time Affects Cognitive and Noncognitive Development," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 32(4), pages 787-836.
    9. Buonomo Zabaleta, Mariela, 2011. "The impact of child labor on schooling outcomes in Nicaragua," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 30(6), pages 1527-1539.
    10. Peter Funk & Thorsten Kemper, 2016. "Leisure and Learning - Activities and Their Effects on Child Skill Development," Working Paper Series in Economics 85, University of Cologne, Department of Economics.
    11. Trong‐Anh Trinh & Alberto Posso & Simon Feeny, 2020. "Child Labor and Rainfall Deviation: Panel Data Evidence from Rural Vietnam," The Developing Economies, Institute of Developing Economies, vol. 58(1), pages 63-76, March.
    12. Daniela Del Boca & Christopher Flinn & Matthew Wiswall, 2014. "Household Choices and Child Development," The Review of Economic Studies, Review of Economic Studies Ltd, vol. 81(1), pages 137-185.
    13. Hanan G. Jacoby & Emmanuel Skoufias, 1997. "Risk, Financial Markets, and Human Capital in a Developing Country," The Review of Economic Studies, Review of Economic Studies Ltd, vol. 64(3), pages 311-335.
    14. Petra E. Todd & Kenneth I. Wolpin, 2007. "The Production of Cognitive Achievement in Children: Home, School, and Racial Test Score Gaps," Journal of Human Capital, University of Chicago Press, vol. 1(1), pages 91-136.
    15. Kathleen Beegle & Rajeev Dehejia & Roberta Gatti, 2009. "Why Should We Care About Child Labor?: The Education, Labor Market, and Health Consequences of Child Labor," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 44(4).
    16. Victoria Gunnarsson & Peter F. Orazem & Mario A. Sánchez, 2006. "Child Labor and School Achievement in Latin America," The World Bank Economic Review, World Bank, vol. 20(1), pages 31-54.
    17. Hideo Akabayashi & George Psacharopoulos, 1999. "The trade-off between child labour and human capital formation: A Tanzanian case study," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 35(5), pages 120-140.
    18. Karthik Muralidharan & Venkatesh Sundararaman, 2013. "Contract Teachers: Experimental Evidence from India," NBER Working Papers 19440, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    19. Flavio Cunha & James J. Heckman, 2008. "Formulating, Identifying and Estimating the Technology of Cognitive and Noncognitive Skill Formation," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 43(4).
    20. Daniela Del Boca & Chiara Monfardini & Cheti Nicoletti, 2017. "Parental and Child Time Investments and the Cognitive Development of Adolescents," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 35(2), pages 565-608.
    21. Kenneth I. Wolpin & Petra E. Todd, 2006. "Assessing the Impact of a School Subsidy Program in Mexico: Using a Social Experiment to Validate a Dynamic Behavioral Model of Child Schooling and Fertility," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(5), pages 1384-1417, December.
    22. Skoufias, Emmanuel & Parker, Susan W., 2001. "Conditional cash transfers and their impact on child work and schooling," FCND briefs 123, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
    23. Das, Jishnu & Zajonc, Tristan, 2010. "India shining and Bharat drowning: Comparing two Indian states to the worldwide distribution in mathematics achievement," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 92(2), pages 175-187, July.
    24. Ariel Fiszbein & Norbert Schady & Francisco H.G. Ferreira & Margaret Grosh & Niall Keleher & Pedro Olinto & Emmanuel Skoufias, 2009. "Conditional Cash Transfers : Reducing Present and Future Poverty," World Bank Publications - Books, The World Bank Group, number 2597, December.
    25. Petra E. Todd & Kenneth I. Wolpin, 2003. "On The Specification and Estimation of The Production Function for Cognitive Achievement," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 113(485), pages 3-33, February.
    26. Emilia Del Bono & Marco Francesconi & Yvonne Kelly & Amanda Sacker, 2016. "Early Maternal Time Investment and Early Child Outcomes," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 126(596), pages 96-135, October.
    27. David J. Deming & Justine S. Hastings & Thomas J. Kane & Douglas O. Staiger, 2014. "School Choice, School Quality, and Postsecondary Attainment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 104(3), pages 991-1013, March.
    28. George Psacharopoulos & Harry Anthony Patrinos, 1997. "Family size, schooling and child labor in Peru - An empirical analysis," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 10(4), pages 387-405.
    29. Glewwe, P. & Muralidharan, K., 2016. "Improving Education Outcomes in Developing Countries," Handbook of the Economics of Education,, Elsevier.
    30. Keane, Michael P & Wolpin, Kenneth I, 1997. "The Career Decisions of Young Men," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 105(3), pages 473-522, June.
    31. Christelle Dumas, 2012. "Does Work Impede Child Learning? The Case of Senegal," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 60(4), pages 773-793.
    32. Orazem, Peter F. & Gunnarsson, Louise Victoria, 2004. "Child Labour, School Attendance And Performance: A Review," Working Papers 18213, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
    33. Emilia Del Bono & Marco Francesconi & Yvonne Kelly & Amanda Sacker, 2016. "Early Maternal Time Investment and Early Child Outcomes," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 126(596), pages 96-135, October.
    34. Bezerra, Márcio Eduardo G. & Kassouf, Ana Lucia & Arends-Kuenning, Mary P., 2009. "The Impact of Child Labor and School Quality on Academic Achievement in Brazil," IZA Discussion Papers 4062, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    35. Cigno, Alessandro & Rosati, Furio Camillo, 2005. "The Economics of Child Labour," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780199264452, Decembrie.
    36. Orazio Attanasio & Costas Meghir & Emily Nix & Francesca Salvati, 2017. "Human Capital Growth and Poverty: Evidence from Ethiopia and Peru," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 25, pages 234-259, April.
    37. Ravallion, Martin & Wodon, Quentin, 2000. "Does Child Labour Displace Schooling? Evidence on Behavioural Responses to an Enrollment Subsidy," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 110(462), pages 158-175, March.
    38. Beegle, Kathleen & Dehejia, Rajeev H. & Gatti, Roberta, 2006. "Child labor and agricultural shocks," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 81(1), pages 80-96, October.
    39. Ranjan RAY & Geoffrey LANCASTER, 2005. "The impact of children's work on schooling: Multi-country evidence," International Labour Review, International Labour Organization, vol. 144(2), pages 189-210, June.
    40. Paul Glewwe, 2002. "Schools and Skills in Developing Countries: Education Policies and Socioeconomic Outcomes," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 40(2), pages 436-482, June.
    41. Singh, Abhijeet, 2015. "Private school effects in urban and rural India: Panel estimates at primary and secondary school ages," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 113(C), pages 16-32.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Piza, Caio & Souza, André Portela Fernandes de, 2016. "Short and long-term effects of a child-labor ban," Textos para discussão 428, FGV EESP - Escola de Economia de São Paulo, Fundação Getulio Vargas (Brazil).
    2. Sarah Cattan & Christine Farquharson & Sonya Krutikova & Andrew McKendrick & Almudena Sevilla, 2023. "Parental labour market instability and children's mental health during the pandemic," IFS Working Papers W23/21, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
    3. Borra, Cristina & Iacovou, Maria & Sevilla, Almudena, 2023. "Adolescent development and the math gender gap," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 158(C).
    4. Greta Morando & Sonkurt Sen & Almudena Sevilla, 2024. "Maternal Beliefs and Long-Term Child Skill Development," CRC TR 224 Discussion Paper Series crctr224_2024_498, University of Bonn and University of Mannheim, Germany.
    5. Guariso, Andrea & Björkman Nyqvist, Martina, 2023. "The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on children’s learning and wellbeing: Evidence from India," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 164(C).
    6. Mitchell, Mark & Favara, Marta & Porter, Catherine & Sanchez, Alan, 2020. "Human Capital Development: New Evidence on the Production of Socio-Emotional Skills," IZA Discussion Papers 13804, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    7. Posso, Alberto, 2023. "Bilingual education and child labor: Lessons from Peru," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 212(C), pages 840-872.

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Michael P Keane & Sonya Krutikova & Timothy Neal, 2018. "The impact of child work on cognitive development: results from four Low to Middle Income countries," IFS Working Papers W18/29, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
    2. Edmonds, Eric V., 2008. "Child Labor," Handbook of Development Economics, in: T. Paul Schultz & John A. Strauss (ed.), Handbook of Development Economics, edition 1, volume 4, chapter 57, pages 3607-3709, Elsevier.
    3. Lee, Jieun & Kim, Hyoungjong & Rhee, Dong-Eun, 2021. "No harmless child labor: The effect of child labor on academic achievement in francophone Western and Central Africa," International Journal of Educational Development, Elsevier, vol. 80(C).
    4. Patrick M. Emerson & Vladimir Ponczek & André Portela Souza, 2017. "Child Labor and Learning," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 65(2), pages 265-296.
    5. Jinnat Ara & Dipanwita Sarkar & Jayanta Sarkar, 2021. "Like mother like daughter? Occupational mobility among children under asset transfer program in Bangladesh," QuBE Working Papers 061, QUT Business School.
    6. Elena Claudia Meroni & Daniela Piazzalunga & Chiara Pronzato, 2022. "Allocation of time and child socio-emotional skills," Review of Economics of the Household, Springer, vol. 20(4), pages 1155-1192, December.
    7. Singh, Abhijeet, 2015. "Private school effects in urban and rural India: Panel estimates at primary and secondary school ages," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 113(C), pages 16-32.
    8. Liyousew Gebremedhin Borga, 2019. "Children’s Own Time Use and its Effect on Skill Formation," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 55(5), pages 876-893, May.
    9. Burrone, Sara & Giannelli, Gianna Claudia, 2019. "Does Child Labor Lead to Vulnerable Employment in Adulthood? Evidence for Tanzania," IZA Discussion Papers 12162, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    10. Mussa, Essa Chanie & Mirzabaev, Alisher & Admassie, Assefa & Nshakira-Rukundo, Emmanuel & von Braun, Joachim, 2019. "Does childhood work impede long-term human capital accumulation? Empirical evidence from rural Ethiopia," International Journal of Educational Development, Elsevier, vol. 66(C), pages 234-246.
    11. Chang, Grace, 2022. "How is adolescents' time allocation associated with their self-esteem and self-efficacy? Evidence from four developing countries," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 115059, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    12. Cobb-Clark, Deborah A. & Harmon, Colm P. & Staneva, Anita, 2018. "The Bilingual Gap in Children's Language and Emotional Development," IZA Discussion Papers 11800, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    13. Beegle, Kathleen & Dehejia, Rajeev H. & Gatti, Roberta & Krutikova, Sofya, 2008. "The consequences of child labor : evidence from longitudinal data in rural Tanzania," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4677, The World Bank.
    14. Delphine BOUTIN & Marine JOUVIN, 2022. "Child Labour Consequences on Education and Health: A Review of Evidence and Knowledge Gaps," Bordeaux Economics Working Papers 2022-14, Bordeaux School of Economics (BSE).
    15. Hélène Le Forner, 2023. "Parents' Separation: What is the Effect on Parents' and Children's Time Investments?," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 85(4), pages 718-754, August.
    16. Claus Pörtner, 2016. "Effects of parental absence on child labor and school attendance in the Philippines," Review of Economics of the Household, Springer, vol. 14(1), pages 103-130, March.
    17. 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.
    18. Delphine Boutin & Marine Jouvin, 2022. "Child Labour Consequences on Education and Health: A Review of Evidence and Knowledge Gaps," Working Papers hal-03896700, HAL.
    19. Kaila, Heidi & Sahn, David E. & Sunder, Naveen, 2018. "Early Life Determinants of Cognitive Ability: A Comparative Study on Madagascar and Senegal," IZA Discussion Papers 11550, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    20. Bezerra, Márcio Eduardo G. & Kassouf, Ana Lucia & Arends-Kuenning, Mary P., 2009. "The Impact of Child Labor and School Quality on Academic Achievement in Brazil," IZA Discussion Papers 4062, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).

    More about this item

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:wly:quante:v:13:y:2022:i:2:p:425-465. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a bibliographic reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: Wiley Content Delivery (email available below). General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/essssea.html .

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service. RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.