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Why does child labour persist with declining poverty?

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  • Jayanta Sarkar

    (QUT)

  • Dipanwita Sarkar

    (QUT)

Abstract

Uneven success of poverty-based approaches calls for a re-think of the causes behind persistent child labour in many developing societies. We develop a theoretical model to highlight the role of income inequality as a channel of persistence. The interplay between income inequality and investments in human capital gives rise to a non-convergent dynamic path of income distribution characterised by clustering of steady state relative incomes around local poles. The child labour trap thus generated is shown to preserve itself despite rising per capita income. In this context, we demonstrate that redistributive policies, such as public provision of education can alleviate the trap, while a ceteris paribus ban on child labour is likely to aggravate it.

Suggested Citation

  • Jayanta Sarkar & Dipanwita Sarkar, 2012. "Why does child labour persist with declining poverty?," NCER Working Paper Series 84, National Centre for Econometric Research, revised 21 Nov 2012.
  • Handle: RePEc:qut:auncer:2012_7
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    Cited by:

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    2. Jinnat Ara & Dipanwita Sarkar & Jayanta Sarkar, 2021. "Like mother like daughter? Occupational mobility among children under asset transfer program in Bangladesh," QuBE Working Papers 061, QUT Business School.
    3. Madeeha Gohar Qureshi & Saman Nazir & Hafsa Hina, 2014. "Child Work and Schooling in Pakistan— To What Extent Poverty and Other Demographic and Parental Background Matter?," PIDE-Working Papers 2014:105, Pakistan Institute of Development Economics.
    4. Huamaní-Huapaya, Edson Raúl, 2019. "Persistencia Intergeneracional del Trabajo Infantil y Adolescente en Perú [Intergenerational Persistence of Child Labor in Peru]," MPRA Paper 101247, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    5. Oryoie, Ali Reza & Alwang, Jeffrey & Tideman, Nicolaus, 2017. "Child Labor and Household Land Holding: Theory and Empirical Evidence from Zimbabwe," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 100(C), pages 45-58.
    6. Aïssata COULIBALY, 2016. "Revisiting the Relationship between Financial Development and Child Labor in Developing Countries: Do Inequality and Institutions Matter?," Working Papers 201619, CERDI.
    7. Chakraborty, Kamalika & Chakraborty, Bidisha, 2016. "Learning by doing, low level equilibrium trap, and effect of domestic policies on child labour," MPRA Paper 74712, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    8. Chakraborty, Bidisha & Chakraborty, Kamalika, 2016. "Low Level Equilibrium Trap, Unemployment, School Quality, Child Labour and Human Capital Formation," MPRA Paper 74621, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    9. Lutfullah Lutf & Shahadat I Haq Yasini, 2018. "Factors Contributing to Child Labor in Afghanistan: A Case Study in Jalalabad City," Economic Alternatives, University of National and World Economy, Sofia, Bulgaria, issue 3, pages 348-372, September.
    10. Bidisha Chakraborty & Kamalika Chakraborty, 2014. "Child Labour, human capital formation and size of landholding: short run and long run analysis," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 34(3), pages 2024-2037.
    11. Kamalika Chakraborty & Bidisha Chakraborty, 2018. "Low level equilibrium trap, unemployment, efficiency of education system, child labour and human capital formation," Journal of Economics, Springer, vol. 125(1), pages 69-95, September.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Child labour; Health; Human capital; Income inequality; Multiple equilibria;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • I1 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health
    • J2 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor
    • O1 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development
    • O2 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Development Planning and Policy

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