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Who does the chores? Estimation of a household production function in Peru

  • Garcia, Luis

In less developed countries like Peru, it is very frequent to observe that, in poor households, parents and children work together doing household work in their own home. This fact is even more evident among girls, who work at home cleaning, cooking, taking care of younger siblings, etc., which may deter them from attending school. In the current literature on child labour, it is always assumed that this occurs because girls are more productive at home than boys; therefore is more likely to observe girls staying home and boys working in the labour market. To check to what extent this common assumption is true, this paper estimates the determinants of household work in Peru, and obtains the parameters of the production function of “chores”. Since the total amount of “chores” is not observable, I use wages and the first order conditions of a standard time allocation model to estimate the model. The estimated production function is consistent with a strictly concave production function in which the inputs are substitutes. It also shows that girls have a higher marginal product than boys in the production of “chores”. All data was taken from the Peruvian Living Standard Measurement Survey of 1997 and 2000.

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Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 23223.

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Date of creation: 2007
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Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:23223
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  1. John L. Newman & Paul J. Gertler, 1994. "Family Productivity, Labor Supply, and Welfare in a Low Income Country," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 29(4), pages 989-1026.
  2. Binder, Melissa & Scrogin, David, 1999. "Labor Force Participation and Household Work of Urban Schoolchildren in Mexico: Characteristics and Consequences," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 48(1), pages 123-54, October.
  3. Sonia Bhalotra, 2000. "Is Child Work Necessary?," Econometric Society World Congress 2000 Contributed Papers 0500, Econometric Society.
  4. Luis García, 2006. "Child labor, home production and the family labor supply," Revista de Analisis Economico – Economic Analysis Review, Ilades-Georgetown University, Universidad Alberto Hurtado/School of Economics and Bussines, vol. 21(1), pages 59-79, July.
  5. Gronau, Reuben, 1977. "Leisure, Home Production, and Work-The Theory of the Allocation of Time Revisited," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 85(6), pages 1099-1123, December.
  6. Drusilla K. Brown & Alan V. Deardorff & Robert M. Stern, 2001. "U.S. Trade and Other Policy Options and Programs to Deter Foreign Exploitation of Child Labor," NBER Chapters, in: Topics in Empirical International Economics: A Festschrift in Honor of Robert E. Lipsey, pages 233-262 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Fishe, Raymond P. H. & Trost, R. P. & Lurie, Philip M., 1981. "Labor force earnings and college choice of young women: An examination of selectivity bias and comparative advantage," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 1(2), pages 169-191, April.
  8. Ransom, Michael R, 1987. "An Empirical Model of Discrete and Continuous Choice in Family Labor Supply," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 69(3), pages 465-72, August.
  9. Lee, Lung-fei & Maddala, G S & Trost, R P, 1980. "Asymptotic Covariance Matrices of Two-Stage Probit and Two-Stage Tobit Methods for Simultaneous Equations Models with Selectivity," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 48(2), pages 491-503, March.
  10. Marcel Kerkhofs & Peter Kooreman, 2003. "Identification and estimation of a class of household production models," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 18(3), pages 337-369.
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