IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this paper

How to Deal with Covert Child Labour, and Give Children an Effective Education, in a Poor Developing Country: An Optimal Taxation Problem with Moral Hazard


  • Alessandro Cigno


Given that credit and insurance markets are imperfect, and given also that intra-household transfers, and much of the work a child does, are private information, the second-best policy uses a combination of need and merit based education awards, together with a mix of taxes on parental income, and on the return to educational investment. It also makes school enrollment compulsory and, if the child wage rate is sufficiently high, sets a ceiling, decreasing in parental income, on overt child labour.

Suggested Citation

  • Alessandro Cigno, 2010. "How to Deal with Covert Child Labour, and Give Children an Effective Education, in a Poor Developing Country: An Optimal Taxation Problem with Moral Hazard," CESifo Working Paper Series 3077, CESifo Group Munich.
  • Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_3077

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Fuwa Nobuhiko & Ito Seiro & Kubo Kensuke & Kurosaki Takashi & Sawada Yasuyuki, 2012. "How Does Credit Access Affect Children's Time Allocation?: Evidence from Rural India," Journal of Globalization and Development, De Gruyter, vol. 3(1), pages 1-28, June.
    2. Hanushek, Eric A. & Leung, Charles Ka Yui & Yilmaz, Kuzey, 2003. "Redistribution through education and other transfer mechanisms," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(8), pages 1719-1750, November.
    3. Razin, Assaf, 1976. "Lifetime Uncertainty, Human Capital and Physical Capital," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 14(3), pages 439-448, September.
    4. Ranjan, Priya, 2001. "Credit constraints and the phenomenon of child labor," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 64(1), pages 81-102, February.
    5. Townsend, Robert M, 1994. "Risk and Insurance in Village India," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 62(3), pages 539-591, May.
    6. Loury, Glenn C, 1981. "Intergenerational Transfers and the Distribution of Earnings," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 49(4), pages 843-867, June.
    7. Levhari, David & Weiss, Yoram, 1974. "The Effect of Risk on the Investment in Human Capital," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 64(6), pages 950-963, December.
    8. Dehejia, Rajeev H. & Beegle, Kathleen & Gatti, Roberta, 2003. "Child labor, income shocks, and access to credit," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3075, The World Bank.
    9. Pouliot, William, 2006. "Introducing uncertainty into Baland and Robinson's model of child labour," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 79(1), pages 264-272, February.
    10. Kodde, David A, 1986. "Uncertainty and the Demand for Education," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 68(3), pages 460-467, August.
    11. 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.
    12. Sylvain E. Dessy & St├ęphane Pallage, 2005. "A Theory of the Worst Forms of Child Labour," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 115(500), pages 68-87, January.
    13. William R. Johnson, 1987. "Income Redistribution as Human Capital Insurance," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 22(2), pages 269-280.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)


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

    Cited by:

    1. Webbink, Ellen & Smits, Jeroen & de Jong, Eelke, 2012. "Hidden Child Labor: Determinants of Housework and Family Business Work of Children in 16 Developing Countries," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 40(3), pages 631-642.

    More about this item


    child labour; education; uncertainty; moral hazard;

    JEL classification:

    • D82 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Asymmetric and Private Information; Mechanism Design
    • H21 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Efficiency; Optimal Taxation
    • H31 - Public Economics - - Fiscal Policies and Behavior of Economic Agents - - - Household
    • I28 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Government Policy
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity


    Access and download statistics


    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:ces:ceswps:_3077. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Klaus Wohlrabe). General contact details of provider: .

    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 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.

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

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.