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Do Parents Favor their Biological Offspring over Adopted Orphans? Theory and Evidence from Tanzania

  • Papa Seck

    ()

    (Hunter College, Department of Economics)

This paper looks at the consequences children face when they lose a parent(s). After modeling the representative household’s bargaining process between their biological and orphaned children, the empirical section of this paper looks at the types of activities that children engage in, and the differences in educational outlays of host households between those children who have lost their parents and those who have not. The results indicate that orphanhood is of critical importance to human capital formation as the probability of engaging in child labor and being idle increases relative to school attendance, following the loss of both parents. This has the same distortionary effect as a tax on children as a result of orphanhood. Even though these children do not have markedly lower abilities to read, write or perform written calculation before the death of their parents, they are outperformed in all three categories once they join the new household following the loss of both parents. It concludes that for policymakers, in-kind subsidies provided at the school level will have a bigger impact than those provided at the household level.

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File URL: http://econ.hunter.cuny.edu/wp-content/uploads/sites/6/RePEc/papers/HunterEconWP409.pdf
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Paper provided by Hunter College Department of Economics in its series Economics Working Paper Archive at Hunter College with number 409.

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Length: 51 pages
Date of creation: 2005
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:htr:hcecon:409
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  1. David Evans & Edward Miguel, 2007. "Orphans and schooling in africa: a longitudinal analysis," Demography, Springer, vol. 44(1), pages 35-57, February.
  2. Partha Deb & Furio Rosati, 2002. "Determinants of Child Labor and School Attendance: The Role of Household Unobservables," Economics Working Paper Archive at Hunter College 02/9, Hunter College Department of Economics.
  3. Beegle, Kathleen & Dehejia, Rajeev H & Gatti, Roberta, 2005. "Child Labour, Crop Shocks and Credit Constraints," CEPR Discussion Papers 4881, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  4. Rosati, Furio Camillo & Tzannatos, Zafiris, 2003. "Child work : an expository framework of altruistic and non-altruistic models," Social Protection Discussion Papers 25984, The World Bank.
  5. Anne Case & Christina Paxson & Joseph Ableidinger, 2002. "Orphans in Africa," NBER Working Papers 9213, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Robert Haveman & Barbara Wolfe, 1995. "The Determinants of Children's Attainments: A Review of Methods and Findings," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 33(4), pages 1829-1878, December.
  7. Priya Ranjan, 2004. "Why Children Work, Attend School, or Stay Idle: Theory and Evidence," Econometric Society 2004 Australasian Meetings 362, Econometric Society.
  8. Gertler, Paul & Levine, David I. & Ames, Minnie, 2003. "Schooling and Parental Death," Center for International and Development Economics Research, Working Paper Series qt0dd4659h, Center for International and Development Economics Research, Institute for Business and Economic Research, UC Berkeley.
  9. Kenneth Train, 2003. "Discrete Choice Methods with Simulation," Online economics textbooks, SUNY-Oswego, Department of Economics, number emetr2.
  10. Datcher, Linda P, 1982. "Effects of Community and Family Background on Achievement," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 64(1), pages 32-41, February.
  11. Chamberlain, Gary, 1984. "Panel data," Handbook of Econometrics, in: Z. Griliches† & M. D. Intriligator (ed.), Handbook of Econometrics, edition 1, volume 2, chapter 22, pages 1247-1318 Elsevier.
  12. Jean-Marie Baland & James A. Robinson, 2000. "Is Child Labor Inefficient?," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 108(4), pages 663-679, August.
  13. Anne Case & Christina Paxson & Joseph Ableidinger, 2004. "Orphans in Africa: parental death, poverty, and school enrollment," Demography, Springer, vol. 41(3), pages 483-508, August.
  14. Becker, Gary S & Tomes, Nigel, 1979. "An Equilibrium Theory of the Distribution of Income and Intergenerational Mobility," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 87(6), pages 1153-89, December.
  15. Borsch-Supan, Axel & Pollakowski, Henry O., 1990. "Estimating housing consumption adjustments from panel data," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(2), pages 131-150, March.
  16. Anu Rammohan, 2000. "The Interaction of Child-labour and Schooling in Developing Countries: A Theoretical Perspective," Journal of Economic Development, Chung-Ang Unviersity, Department of Economics, vol. 25(2), pages 85-99, December.
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