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Education and Conflict Recovery: The Case of Timor Leste

  • Patricia Justino

    ()

    (Institute of Development Studies (IDS), University of Sussex)

  • Marinella Leone

    ()

    (Department of Economics, University of Sussex)

  • Paola Salardi

    ()

    (Department of Economics, University of Sussex)

The Timor Leste secession conflict lasted for 25 years. Its last wave of violence in 1999, following the withdrawal of Indonesian troops, generated massive displacement and destruction with widespread consequences for the economic and social development of the country. This paper analyzes the impact of the conflict on the level and access to education of boys and girls in Timor Leste. We examine the short-term impact of the 1999 violence on school attendance and grade deficit rates in 2001, and the longer-term impact of the conflict on primary school completion of cohorts of children observed in 2007. We compare also the educational impact of the 1999 wave of violence with the impact of other periods of high-intensity violence during the 25 years of Indonesian occupation. The short-term effects of the conflict are mixed. In the longer term, we find a strong negative impact of the conflict on primary school completion among boys of school age exposed to peaks of violence during the 25-year long conflict. The effect is stronger for boys attending the last three grades of primary school. This result shows a substantial loss of human capital among young males in Timor Leste since the early 1970s, resulting from household investment trade-offs between education and economic survival.

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Paper provided by Households in Conflict Network in its series HiCN Working Papers with number 100.

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Length: 63 pages
Date of creation: Oct 2011
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:hic:wpaper:100
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.hicn.org

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