IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

Centre-based versus home-based childcare

  • Bauchmüller R.


Centrebased childcare is seen as a public investment to facilitate maternalemployment. Recent theoretical research proposes that such investmentspotentially lead to substantial gains in child development and thus to high returnsfor society as a whole. However, the empirical evidence is still scarce and oftencontradictory. This study is based on rich survey data of a largescale cohort studyof children living in the Netherlands at the beginning of the new millennium. TheNetherlands has made substantial investments in the last two decades to make themarket of centrebased provisions more professional and farreaching and toimprove childrens school readiness. I study the impact of experiencing centreratherthan homebased childcare on language, cognitive and noncognitive development, assessed at the age of 6. To assess whether very long or intensive childcare spells can be harmful, I account for possible nonlinearity in the correlation between the centrebased childcare experience and the child outcomes. As sensitivity analyses, I also apply instrumental variable and structural equation modelling approaches to try to correct for potential biases in my estimates that would result, for example, from unobserved heterogeneity of parents and children. For both ordinary least square estimates as well as the sensitivity analyses the results do not support the significant shortterm effects of centrebased childcare stated in the literature.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL:
Download Restriction: no

Paper provided by United Nations University - Maastricht Economic and Social Research Institute on Innovation and Technology (MERIT) in its series MERIT Working Papers with number 026.

in new window

Date of creation: 2013
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:unm:unumer:2013026
Contact details of provider: Postal: P.O. Box 616, 6200 MD Maastricht
Phone: (31) (0)43 3883875
Fax: (31) (0)43 3216518
Web page:

More information through EDIRC

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

as in new window
  1. James Heckman & Anne Layne-Farrar & Petra Todd, 1995. "Does Measured School Quality Really Matter? An Examination of the Earnings-Quality Relationship," NBER Working Papers 5274, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Bernal, Raquel & Keane, Michael P., 2010. "Quasi-structural estimation of a model of childcare choices and child cognitive ability production," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 156(1), pages 164-189, May.
  3. Hausman, Jerry A, 1978. "Specification Tests in Econometrics," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 46(6), pages 1251-71, November.
  4. Flavio Cunha & James J. Heckman, 2008. "Formulating, Identifying and Estimating the Technology of Cognitive and Noncognitive Skill Formation," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 43(4).
  5. Datta Gupta, Nabanita & Simonsen, Marianne, 2010. "Non-cognitive child outcomes and universal high quality child care," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 94(1-2), pages 30-43, February.
  6. Brilli, Ylenia & Del Boca, Daniela & Pronzato, Chiara D., 2011. "Exploring the Impacts of Public Childcare on Mothers and Children in Italy: Does Rationing Play a Role?," IZA Discussion Papers 5918, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  7. James J. Heckman, 2008. "Schools, Skills, And Synapses," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 46(3), pages 289-324, 07.
  8. Maria del Carmen Huerta & Willem Adema & Jennifer Baxter & Miles Corak & Mette Deding & Matthew C. Gray & Wen-Jui Han & Jane Waldfogel, 2011. "Early Maternal Employment and Child Development in Five OECD Countries," OECD Social, Employment and Migration Working Papers 118, OECD Publishing.
  9. Paul Gregg & Elizabeth Washbrook & Carol Propper & Simon Burgess, 2005. "The Effects of a Mother's Return to Work Decision on Child Development in the UK," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 115(501), pages F48-F80, 02.
  10. Ermisch, John F, 1989. "Purchased Child Care, Optimal Family Size and Mother's Employment: Theory and Econometric Analysis," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 2(2), pages 79-102.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:unm:unumer:2013026. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Ad Notten)

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.