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Child Labor and Conflict: Evidence from Afghanistan

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  • Kofol, Chiara
  • Ciarli, Tommaso

Abstract

We study the impact of conflict on both the extensive and the intensive margin of child labor in Afghanistan. We identify and test two main mechanisms. First, if conflict reduces a household income through a decline in parent's compensations, child labor may insure against the decrease in consumption (extensive margin). Second, a child may work longer hours if the marginal benefits of working under conflict is greater than its marginal cost, which may depend on the relative compensations between adults and children, and on the alternative activities (e.g. schooling). Using detailed conflict data from the Afghan War Diary we identify the effect of conflict relying on a shift-share IV strategy. We find that conflict increases the probability that girls work, but reduces the number of hours worked. Our results suggest that this is due to a decrease in household income and an increase in the relative compensations of adults.

Suggested Citation

  • Kofol, Chiara & Ciarli, Tommaso, 2017. "Child Labor and Conflict: Evidence from Afghanistan," Discussion Papers 260275, University of Bonn, Center for Development Research (ZEF).
  • Handle: RePEc:ags:ubzefd:260275
    DOI: 10.22004/ag.econ.260275
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    File URL: https://ageconsearch.umn.edu/record/260275/files/DP240.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Ciarli, Tommaso & Kofol, Chiara & Menon, Carlo, 2015. "Business as unusual. An explanation of the increase of private economic activity in high-conflict areas in Afghanistan," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 65015, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    2. Di Maio, Michele & Nandi, Tushar K., 2013. "The effect of the Israeli–Palestinian conflict on child labor and school attendance in the West Bank," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 100(1), pages 107-116.
    3. Bove, Vincenzo & Gavrilova, Evelina, 2014. "Income and Livelihoods in the War in Afghanistan," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 60(C), pages 113-131.
    4. Klaus Deininger, 2003. "Causes and consequences of civil strife: micro-level evidence from Uganda," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 55(4), pages 579-606, October.
    5. Albert Saiz, 2003. "Room in the Kitchen for the Melting Pot: Immigration and Rental Prices," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 85(3), pages 502-521, August.
    6. Eik Leong Swee, 2009. "On War and Schooling Attainment: The Case of Bosnia and Herzegovina," HiCN Working Papers 57, Households in Conflict Network.
    7. Catherine rodr�guez & fabio sánchez, 2012. "Armed Conflict Exposure, Human Capital Investments, And Child Labor: Evidence From Colombia," Defence and Peace Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 23(2), pages 161-184, April.
    8. Deininger,Klaus W., 2003. "Causes and consequences of civil strife - micro-level evidence from Uganda," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3045, The World Bank.
    9. Bartel, Ann P, 1989. "Where Do the New U.S. Immigrants Live?," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 7(4), pages 371-391, October.
    10. Talia Bar & Kaushik Basu, 2009. "Children, Education, Labor, and Land: In The Long Run and Short Run," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 7(2-3), pages 487-497, 04-05.
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    Keywords

    Labor and Human Capital;

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