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Early Childhood Stimulation Interventions in Developing Countries: A Comprehensive Literature Review

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  • Baker-Henningham, Helen

    () (University of the West Indies, Mona)

  • López Bóo, Florencia

    () (Inter-American Development Bank)

Abstract

This report reviews the effectiveness of early childhood stimulation interventions in developing countries. The report aims to answer the questions: What works in terms of early stimulation for young children in developing countries? For whom and under what conditions do these programs work and why do they work. The report is divided into several sections. Firstly, a brief discussion of the importance of early stimulation for young children in developing countries is provided. Secondly, the methods used to identify and characterize studies are provided and a review of randomized or quasi-experimental trials is presented. Thirdly, a review of the evidence for who benefits most from early interventions is presented followed by a review of program characteristics that affect the success of interventions and an examination of potential mechanisms through which interventions achieve their effects. Finally, recommendations for practice and future research are provided.

Suggested Citation

  • Baker-Henningham, Helen & López Bóo, Florencia, 2010. "Early Childhood Stimulation Interventions in Developing Countries: A Comprehensive Literature Review," IZA Discussion Papers 5282, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp5282
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. James J. Heckman & Jora Stixrud & Sergio Urzua, 2006. "The Effects of Cognitive and Noncognitive Abilities on Labor Market Outcomes and Social Behavior," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 24(3), pages 411-482, July.
    2. Armecin, Graeme & Behrman, Jere R. & Duazo, Paulita & Ghuman, Sharon & Gultiano, Socorro & King, Elizabeth M. & Lee, Nannette, 2006. "Early childhood development through an integrated program : evidence from the Philippines," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3922, The World Bank.
    3. James J. Heckman & Dimitriy V. Masterov, 2007. "The Productivity Argument for Investing in Young Children," Review of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 29(3), pages 446-493.
    4. Murnane, Richard J & Willett, John B & Levy, Frank, 1995. "The Growing Importance of Cognitive Skills in Wage Determination," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 77(2), pages 251-266, May.
    5. Barnett, W. Steven & Belfield, Clive R., 2006. "Early childhood development and social mobility," MPRA Paper 858, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    6. Cunha, Flavio & Heckman, James J. & Lochner, Lance, 2006. "Interpreting the Evidence on Life Cycle Skill Formation," Handbook of the Economics of Education, Elsevier.
    7. Milagros Nores & Steven W. Barnett, 2012. "Benefits of Early Childhood Interventions Across the World: (Under) Investing in the Very Young," Educational Studies, Higher School of Economics, issue 1, pages 200-228.
    8. Clive R Belfield & Milagros Nores & Steve Barnett & Lawrence Schweinhart, 2006. "The High/Scope Perry Preschool Program: Cost–Benefit Analysis Using Data from the Age-40 Followup," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 41(1).
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    Cited by:

    1. Janeli Kotzé, 2015. "The readiness of the South African education system for a pre-Grade R year," Working Papers 15/2015, Stellenbosch University, Department of Economics.
    2. Jef L. Leroy & Paola Gadsden & Maite Guijarro, 2012. "The impact of daycare programmes on child health, nutrition and development in developing countries: a systematic review," Journal of Development Effectiveness, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 4(3), pages 472-496, September.
    3. Juan F. Castro, 2015. "Effects of early childhood development interventions on parental behaviour: evidence from a home-visiting programme in Peru," Working Papers 15-07, Centro de Investigación, Universidad del Pacífico.
    4. Conti, Gabriella & Heckman, James J., 2012. "The Economics of Child Well-Being," IZA Discussion Papers 6930, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    5. Victor Lavy & Giulia Lotti & Zizhong Yan, 2016. "Empowering Mothers and Enhancing Early Childhood Investment: Effect on Adults Outcomes and Children Cognitive and Non-Cognitive Skills," NBER Working Papers 22963, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. El-Kogali,Safaa El Tayeb & Krafft,Caroline Gould & Abdelkhalek,Touhami & Benkassmi,Mohamed & Chavez,Monica I. & Bassett,Lucy Katherine & Ejjanoui,Fouzia & El-Kogali,Safaa El Tayeb & Krafft,Caroline Go, 2016. "Inequality of opportunity in early childhood development in Morocco over time," Policy Research Working Paper Series 7670, The World Bank.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    developing countries; child development; early stimulation; mothers; parenting;

    JEL classification:

    • J13 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Fertility; Family Planning; Child Care; Children; Youth
    • J18 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Public Policy
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity

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