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Is Child Labor Harmful? The Impact of Working Earlier in Life on Adult Earnings

Listed author(s):
  • Emerson, Patrick M.

    ()

    (Oregon State University)

  • Portela Souza, André

    ()

    (Sao Paulo School of Economics)

This paper explores the question: is working as a child harmful to an individual in terms of adult outcomes in earnings? Though an extremely important question, little is known about the effect of child labor on adult outcomes. Estimations of an instrumental variables earnings model on data from Brazil show that child labor has a large negative impact on adult earnings for male children even when controlling for schooling and that the negative impact of starting to work as a child reverses at around ages 12-14.

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File URL: http://ftp.iza.org/dp3027.pdf
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Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 3027.

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Length: 55 pages
Date of creation: Sep 2007
Publication status: published in: Economic Development and Cultural Change, 2011, 59 (2), 345 - 385
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp3027
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  1. Kaushik Basu, 2000. "A Note on Multiple General Equilibria with Child Labour," Working Papers 78, Institute for Social and Economic Change, Bangalore.
  2. Suzanne Duryea, 1998. "Children's Advancement Through School in Brazil: The Role of Transitory Shocks to Household Income," IDB Publications (Working Papers) 5679, Inter-American Development Bank.
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  10. Emerson, Patrick M & Souza, Andre Portela, 2003. "Is There a Child Labor Trap? Intergenerational Persistence of Child Labor in Brazil," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 51(2), pages 375-398, January.
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  19. repec:idb:wpaper:376 is not listed on IDEAS
  20. Basu, Kaushik & Tzannatos, Zafiris, 2003. "The Global Child Labor Problem: What Do We Know and What Can We Do?," Working Papers 03-06, Cornell University, Center for Analytic Economics.
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