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Childcare voucher and labour market behaviour: Experimental evidence from Finland


  • Tarja Viitanen

    () (Department of Economics, The University of Sheffield)


This article provides experimental estimates of the impact of a voucher for private care on labour force participation and use of private and public child care within the Nordic system of universal provision of public care. In a market that was providing high-quality, low-cost public child care, a voucher is nevertheless found to have a significant, positive effect for the use of private child care with zero effects on either use of public care or labour force participation. The use of private increased by five percentage points in the whole country and by five to seven percentage points in areas that suffer from excess demand for child care as a result of the introduction of the private child care voucher.
(This abstract was borrowed from another version of this item.)

Suggested Citation

  • Tarja Viitanen, 2007. "Childcare voucher and labour market behaviour: Experimental evidence from Finland," Working Papers 2007011, The University of Sheffield, Department of Economics, revised Aug 2007.
  • Handle: RePEc:shf:wpaper:2007011

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Philip Hemmings & David Turner & Seija Parviainen, 2003. "Enhancing the Effectiveness of Public Spending in Finland," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 358, OECD Publishing.
    2. James J. Heckman & Hidehiko Ichimura & Petra E. Todd, 1997. "Matching As An Econometric Evaluation Estimator: Evidence from Evaluating a Job Training Programme," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 64(4), pages 605-654.
    3. Alberto Abadie & Guido W. Imbens, 2002. "Simple and Bias-Corrected Matching Estimators for Average Treatment Effects," NBER Technical Working Papers 0283, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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    Cited by:

    1. Helmut Mahringer & Christine Zulehner, 2015. "Child-care costs and mothers’ employment rates: an empirical analysis for Austria," Review of Economics of the Household, Springer, vol. 13(4), pages 837-870, December.
    2. Kosonen Tuomas, 2014. "To Work or Not to Work? The Effect of Childcare Subsidies on the Labour Supply of Parents," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 14(3), pages 1-32, July.
    3. Taryn W. Morrissey, 2017. "Child care and parent labor force participation: a review of the research literature," Review of Economics of the Household, Springer, vol. 15(1), pages 1-24, March.

    More about this item


    Social experimentation; vouchers; childcare use; labour force participation;

    JEL classification:

    • H42 - Public Economics - - Publicly Provided Goods - - - Publicly Provided Private Goods
    • J2 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor
    • J13 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Fertility; Family Planning; Child Care; Children; Youth

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