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Do Children Benefit from Internet Access? Experimental Evidence from Peru

Author

Listed:
  • Ofer Malamud
  • Santiago Cueta
  • Julian Cristia
  • Diether W. Beuermann

Abstract

This paper provides experimental evidence for the impact of home internet access on a broad range of child outcomes in Peru. We compare children who were randomly chosen to receive laptops with high-speed internet access to (i) those who did not receive laptops and (ii) those who only received laptops without internet. We find that providing free internet access led to improved computer and internet proficiency relative to those without laptops and improved internet proficiency compared to those with laptops only. However, there were no significant effects of internet access on math and reading achievement, cognitive skills, self-esteem, teacher perceptions, or school grades when compared to either group. We explore reasons for the absence of impacts on these key outcomes with survey questions, time-diaries, and computer logs.

Suggested Citation

  • Ofer Malamud & Santiago Cueta & Julian Cristia & Diether W. Beuermann, 2018. "Do Children Benefit from Internet Access? Experimental Evidence from Peru," CESifo Working Paper Series 7384, CESifo Group Munich.
  • Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_7384
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    File URL: https://www.cesifo-group.de/DocDL/cesifo1_wp7384.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Ofer Malamud & Cristian Pop-Eleches, 2011. "Home Computer Use and the Development of Human Capital," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 126(2), pages 987-1027.
    2. Julian Cristia & Pablo Ibarrarán & Santiago Cueto & Ana Santiago & Eugenio Severín, 2017. "Technology and Child Development: Evidence from the One Laptop per Child Program," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 9(3), pages 295-320, July.
    3. Abhijit V. Banerjee & Shawn Cole & Esther Duflo & Leigh Linden, 2007. "Remedying Education: Evidence from Two Randomized Experiments in India," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 122(3), pages 1235-1264.
    4. Kho, Kevin & Lakdawala, Leah & Nakasone, Eduardo, 2018. "Impact of Internet Access on Student Learning in Peruvian Schools," Working Papers 2018-3, Michigan State University, Department of Economics.
    5. Robert W. Fairlie & Jonathan Robinson, 2013. "Experimental Evidence on the Effects of Home Computers on Academic Achievement among Schoolchildren," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 5(3), pages 211-240, July.
    6. Bet, German & Cristia, Julián P. & Ibarrarán, Pablo, 2014. "The Effects of Shared School Technology Access on Students Digital Skills in Peru," IZA Discussion Papers 7954, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    7. Fairlie, Robert W. & Kalil, Ariel, 2017. "The effects of computers on children's social development and school participation: Evidence from a randomized control experiment," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 57(C), pages 10-19.
    8. Benjamin Faber & Rosa Sanchis-Guarner & Felix Weinhardt, 2015. "ICT and Education: Evidence from Student Home Addresses," SERC Discussion Papers 0186, Spatial Economics Research Centre, LSE.
    9. Jacob L. Vigdor & Helen F. Ladd & Erika Martinez, 2014. "Scaling The Digital Divide: Home Computer Technology And Student Achievement," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 52(3), pages 1103-1119, July.
    10. Karthik Muralidharan & Abhijeet Singh & Alejandro J. Ganimian, 2019. "Disrupting Education? Experimental Evidence on Technology-Aided Instruction in India," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 109(4), pages 1426-1460, April.
    11. Maresa Sprietsma, 2012. "Computers as pedagogical tools in Brazil: a pseudo-panel analysis," Education Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 20(1), pages 19-32, November.
    12. Bet, German & Cristia, Julián P. & Ibarrarán, Pablo, 2014. "The Effects of Shared School Technology Access on Students Digital Skills in Peru," IZA Discussion Papers 7954, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    13. Diether W. Beuermann & Julian Cristia & Santiago Cueto & Ofer Malamud & Yyannu Cruz-Aguayo, 2015. "One Laptop per Child at Home: Short-Term Impacts from a Randomized Experiment in Peru," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 7(2), pages 53-80, April.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    internet; children; education; skills; experimental; Peru;

    JEL classification:

    • I21 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Analysis of Education

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