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Origins and Consequences of Child Labor Restrictions: A Macroeconomic Perspective

  • Doepke, Matthias


    (Northwestern University)

  • Krüger, Dirk


    (University of Pennsylvania)

We investigate the positive and normative consequences of child-labor restrictions for economic aggregates and welfare. We argue that even though the laissez-faire outcome may be inefficient, there are usually better policies to cure these inefficiencies than the imposition of a child-labor ban. Given this finding, we investigate the potential political-economic reasons behind the emergence and persistence of child-labor legislation. Our investigation is based on a structural dynamic general equilibrium model that provides a coherent and uniform framework for our analysis.

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Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 3259.

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Length: 51 pages
Date of creation: Dec 2007
Date of revision:
Publication status: published in: Peter Rupert (ed.), Frontiers in Family Economics, Bingley: Emerald, 2008
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp3259
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  1. Drusilla K. Brown & Alan V. Deardorff & Robert M Stern, 2001. "Child Labor: Theory, Evidence, and Policy," Working Papers 474, Research Seminar in International Economics, University of Michigan.
  2. Matthias Doepke, 2001. "Accounting for Fertility Decline During the Transition to Growth," UCLA Economics Working Papers 804, UCLA Department of Economics.
  3. Greenwood, J. & Rogerson, R. & Wright, R., 1993. "Household Production in Real Business Cycle Thoery," RCER Working Papers 347, University of Rochester - Center for Economic Research (RCER).
  4. Dessy, Sylvain & Knowles, John, 2001. "Why is Child Labor Illegal?," Cahiers de recherche 0110, Université Laval - Département d'économique.
  5. Basu, Kaushik & Van, Pham Hoang, 1998. "The Economics of Child Labor," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(3), pages 412-27, June.
  6. Sylvain Dessy & Stephane Pallage, 2000. "Child Labor and Coordination Failures," Cahiers de recherche CREFE / CREFE Working Papers 109, CREFE, Université du Québec à Montréal.
  7. Ranjan, P., 1999. ""Credit Constraints and the Phenomenon of Child Labor"," Papers 98-99-12, California Irvine - School of Social Sciences.
  8. Matthias Doepke & Fabrizio Zilibotti, 2005. "The Macroeconomics of Child Labor Regulation," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(5), pages 1492-1524, December.
  9. Dirk Krueger & Jessica Tjornhom Donohue, 2004. "On the Distributional Consequences of Child Labor Legislation," NBER Working Papers 10347, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Eric V. Edmonds & Nina Pavcnik, 2005. "Child Labor in the Global Economy," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 19(1), pages 199-220, Winter.
  11. Moshe Hazan & Binyamin Berdugo, 2005. "Child Labor, Fertility and Economic Growth," Development and Comp Systems 0507002, EconWPA.
  12. Basu, Kaushik, 1998. "Child labor : cause, consequence, and cure, with remarks on International Labor Standards," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2027, The World Bank.
  13. 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.
  14. Stephen L. Parente & Richard Rogerson & Randall Wright, 2000. "Homework in Development Economics: Household Production and the Wealth of Nations," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 108(4), pages 680-687, August.
  15. Stephane Pallage & Christian Zimmermann, 2000. "Buying Out Child Labor?," Cahiers de recherche CREFE / CREFE Working Papers 123, CREFE, Université du Québec à Montréal.
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