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Female Labour Force Participation and Child Education in India: The Effect of the National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme

  • Afridi, Farzana

    ()

    (Indian Statistical Institute)

  • Mukhopadhyay, Abhiroop

    ()

    (Indian Statistical Institute)

  • Sahoo, Soham

    ()

    (Indian Statistical Institute)

We study the impact of India's National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (NREGS) on children's educational outcomes via women's labour force participation. Using data from the Young Lives Study and taking advantage of the spatial and temporal variation in the intensity of implementation of the NREGS, we find that greater participation of mothers in the program is associated with better educational outcomes of their children. Father's participation in the NREGS, on the other hand, has a negative effect on children's education. Further, the estimated impact of mother's program participation is over and above any income effect induced by the scheme and is robust to concerns about endogeneity of labour force participation and differences in economic trends between districts. We provide evidence which suggests that the mechanism through which children's educational outcomes improve is empowerment of mothers resulting from better labour market opportunities for females.

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Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 6593.

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Length: 55 pages
Date of creation: May 2012
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp6593
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  1. Anderson, Siwan & Eswaran, Mukesh, 2009. "What determines female autonomy? Evidence from Bangladesh," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 90(2), pages 179-191, November.
  2. Qian, Nancy, 2006. "Missing Women and the Price of Tea in China: The Effect of Sex-Specific Earnings on Sex Imbalance," CEPR Discussion Papers 5986, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  3. Thomas, D., 1989. "Intra-Household Resource Allocation: An Inferential Approach," Papers 586, Yale - Economic Growth Center.
  4. Thomas, D., 1995. "Like Father, Like Son, Like Mother, Like Daughter, Parental Resources and Child Height," Papers 95-01, RAND - Reprint Series.
  5. Skoufias, E., 1989. "Labor Market Opportunities And Interafamily Time Allocation In Rural Households In South Asia," Papers 3-90-2, Pennsylvania State - Department of Economics.
  6. Agnes R. Quisumbing & John A. Maluccio, 2003. "Resources at Marriage and Intrahousehold Allocation: Evidence from Bangladesh, Ethiopia, Indonesia, and South Africa," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 65(3), pages 283-327, 07.
  7. McElroy, Marjorie B & Horney, Mary Jean, 1981. "Nash-Bargained Household Decisions: Toward a Generalization of the Theory of Demand," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 22(2), pages 333-49, June.
  8. Haddad, Lawrence & Hoddinott, John, 1994. "Women's income and boy-girl anthropometric status in the Cote d'Ivoire," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 22(4), pages 543-553, April.
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