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Sibling Influence on the Human Capital of the Left Behind

  • Biavaschi, Costanza

    ()

    (University of Reading)

  • Giulietti, Corrado

    ()

    (IZA)

  • Zimmermann, Klaus F.

    ()

    (IZA and University of Bonn)

While a growing literature has analyzed the effects of parental migration on the educational outcomes of children left behind, this is the first study to highlight the importance of sibling interactions in such a context. Using panel data from the RUMiC Survey, we find that sibling influence on schooling performance is stronger among left- behind children. Hence, parental migration seems to trigger changes in the roles and effects among children. However, it is primarily older sisters who exhibit a positive influence on their younger siblings. We corroborate our results by performing a series of tests to mitigate endogeneity issues. The results from the analysis suggest that sibling effects in migrant households might be a mechanism to shape children's outcomes and success and that adjustments within the family left behind have the potential to generate benefits – or reduce hardship – in response to parental migration.

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Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 7859.

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Length: 24 pages
Date of creation: Dec 2013
Date of revision:
Publication status: forthcoming in: Journal of Human Capital, 2015. Pre-publication version available here
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp7859
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  1. Antman, Francisca M., 2011. "The intergenerational effects of paternal migration on schooling and work: What can we learn from children's time allocations?," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 96(2), pages 200-208, November.
  2. Shang-Jin Wei & Xiaobo Zhang, 2009. "The Competitive Saving Motive: Evidence from Rising Sex Ratios and Savings Rates in China," NBER Working Papers 15093, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Francisca M. Antman, 2011. "International Migration and Gender Discrimination among Children Left Behind," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 101(3), pages 645-49, May.
  4. Behrman, Jere R & Pollak, Robert A & Taubman, Paul, 1982. "Parental Preferences and Provision for Progeny," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 90(1), pages 52-73, February.
  5. Jesús Fernández-Huertas Moraga, 2008. "New Evidence on Emigrant Selection," UFAE and IAE Working Papers 742.08, Unitat de Fonaments de l'Anàlisi Econòmica (UAB) and Institut d'Anàlisi Econòmica (CSIC).
  6. Robert Kaestner, 1997. "Are Brothers Really Better? Sibling Sex Composition and Educational Achievement Revisited," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 32(2), pages 250-284.
  7. Mehtap Akgüç & Corrado Giulietti & Klaus Zimmermann, 2014. "The RUMiC longitudinal survey: fostering research on labor markets in China," IZA Journal of Labor & Development, Springer, vol. 3(1), pages 1-14, December.
  8. Daniel I. Rees & Joseph J. Sabia, 2009. "The Effect of Breast Feeding on Educational Attainment: Evidence from Sibling Data," Journal of Human Capital, University of Chicago Press, vol. 3(1), pages 43-72.
  9. Gerald S. Oettinger, 2000. "Sibling Similarity in High School Graduation Outcomes: Causal Interdependency or Unobserved Heterogeneity?," Southern Economic Journal, Southern Economic Association, vol. 66(3), pages 631-648, January.
  10. Daniel D. Schnitzlein, 2011. "How Important Is the Family?: Evidence from Sibling Correlations in Permanent Earnings in the US, Germany and Denmark," SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research 365, DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP).
  11. Xinxin Chen & Qiuqiong Huang & Scott Rozelle & Yaojiang Shi & Linxiu Zhang, 2009. "Effect of Migration on Children's Educational Performance in Rural China," Comparative Economic Studies, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 51(3), pages 323-343, September.
  12. Antman, Francisca M., 2012. "The Impact of Migration on Family Left Behind," IZA Discussion Papers 6374, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  13. Schnitzlein, Daniel D., 2014. "How Important Is the Family? Evidence from Sibling Correlations in Permanent Earnings in the USA, Germany, and Denmark," EconStor Open Access Articles, ZBW - German National Library of Economics, pages 69-89.
  14. Hanushek, Eric A, 1992. "The Trade-Off between Child Quantity and Quality," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 100(1), pages 84-117, February.
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