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Child Gender and Parental Investments in India: Are Boys and Girls Treated Differently?

  • Silvia Helena Barcellos


  • Leandro Carvalho


  • Adriana Lleras-Muney

There is considerable debate in the literature as to whether boys and girls are treated differently in India. But son-biased stopping rules imply that previous estimates are likely to be biased. The authors propose a novel identification strategy to properly identify the effects of child gender on parental investments. Using data from a time use survey they document gender differences in childcare time which have not been studied before in developing countries. They find that boys receive on average 10% more time than girls. They are also more likely to be breastfed for longer, given vaccinations and vitamin supplementation.

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Paper provided by RAND Corporation in its series Working Papers with number 756.

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Length: 54 pages
Date of creation: Mar 2010
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:ran:wpaper:756
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  9. Seema Jayachandran & Adriana Lleras-Muney, 2008. "Life Expectancy and Human Capital Investments: Evidence From Maternal Mortality Declines," NBER Working Papers 13947, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Rohini Pande & Nan Astone, 2007. "Explaining son preference in rural India: the independent role of structural versus individual factors," Population Research and Policy Review, Springer;Southern Demographic Association (SDA), vol. 26(1), pages 1-29, February.
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  15. Case, Anne & Fertig, Angela & Paxson, Christina, 2005. "The lasting impact of childhood health and circumstance," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 24(2), pages 365-389, March.
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  17. Philip Oreopoulos & Mark Stabile & Randy Walld & Leslie L. Roos, 2008. "Short-, Medium-, and Long-Term Consequences of Poor Infant Health: An Analysis Using Siblings and Twins," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 43(1).
  18. Borooah, Vani, 2004. "Gender Bias Among Children in India in their Diet and Immunisation Against Disease," MPRA Paper 19590, University Library of Munich, Germany.
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