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The case against child labor bans

Author

Listed:
  • Francisco Gonzalez

    (Department of Economics, University of Waterloo)

  • Irving Rosales

    (Universidad Iberoamericana)

Abstract

We argue that enforcing blanket child labor restrictions in developing economies, as advocated in the ILO Convention 138, is harmful even in the long run. The social return to child labor can be higher than its private return if laws against crime and laws in favor of compulsory education are not enforced, in which case child labor crowds out both child crime and crime against children.

Suggested Citation

  • Francisco Gonzalez & Irving Rosales, 2016. "The case against child labor bans," Working Papers 1601, University of Waterloo, Department of Economics, revised Jan 2016.
  • Handle: RePEc:wat:wpaper:1601
    as

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    File URL: https://uwaterloo.ca/economics/sites/ca.economics/files/uploads/files/child_labor_january_2016.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Matthias Doepke & Fabrizio Zilibotti, 2010. "Do international labor standards contribute to the persistence of the child-labor problem?," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 15(1), pages 1-31, March.
    2. Basu, Kaushik & Van, Pham Hoang, 1998. "The Economics of Child Labor," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(3), pages 412-427, June.
    3. Kaushik Basu, 1999. "Child Labor: Cause, Consequence, and Cure, with Remarks on International Labor Standards," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 37(3), pages 1083-1119, September.
    4. Basu, Kaushik, 2005. "Child labor and the law: Notes on possible pathologies," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 87(2), pages 169-174, May.
    5. Dirk Krueger & Jessica Tjornhom Donohue, 2005. "On The Distributional Consequences Of Child Labor Legislation," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 46(3), pages 785-815, August.
    6. Matthias Doepke & Fabrizio Zilibotti, 2005. "The Macroeconomics of Child Labor Regulation," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(5), pages 1492-1524, December.
    7. Jafarey, Saqib & Lahiri, Sajal, 2002. "Will trade sanctions reduce child labour?: The role of credit markets," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 68(1), pages 137-156, June.
    8. Jean-Marie Baland & James A. Robinson, 2000. "Is Child Labor Inefficient?," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 108(4), pages 663-679, August.
    9. Francisco M. Gonzalez, "undated". "The Use of Coercion in Society: Insecure Property Rights, Conflict and Economic Backwardness," Working Papers 2010-15, Department of Economics, University of Calgary, revised 09 Sep 2011.
    10. Dessy, Sylvain & Knowles, John, 2008. "Why is child labor illegal?," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 52(7), pages 1275-1311, October.
    11. Ravallion, Martin & Wodon, Quentin, 2000. "Does Child Labour Displace Schooling? Evidence on Behavioural Responses to an Enrollment Subsidy," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 110(462), pages 158-175, March.
    12. Moehling, Carolyn M., 1999. "State Child Labor Laws and the Decline of Child Labor," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 36(1), pages 72-106, January.
    13. Basu, Kaushik & Zarghamee, Homa, 2009. "Is product boycott a good idea for controlling child labor? A theoretical investigation," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 88(2), pages 217-220, March.
    14. repec:hrv:faseco:33901525 is not listed on IDEAS
    15. François Bourguignon & Francisco H. G. Ferreira & Phillippe G. Leite, 2003. "Conditional Cash Transfers, Schooling and Child Labor : Micro-Simulating Bolsa Escola," DELTA Working Papers 2003-07, DELTA (Ecole normale supérieure).
    16. Baland, Jean-Marie & Duprez, Cédric, 2009. "Are labels effective against child labor?," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 93(11-12), pages 1125-1130, December.
    17. Sylvain E. Dessy & Stéphane Pallage, 2005. "A Theory of the Worst Forms of Child Labour," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 115(500), pages 68-87, January.
    18. Elias Dinopoulos & Laixun Zhao, 2007. "Child Labor and Globalization," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 25, pages 553-579.
    19. FranÁois Bourguignon & Francisco H. G. Ferreira & Phillippe G. Leite, 2003. "Conditional Cash Transfers, Schooling, and Child Labor: Micro-Simulating Brazil's Bolsa Escola Program," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 17(2), pages 229-254, December.
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • J88 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor Standards - - - Public Policy
    • O15 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Economic Development: Human Resources; Human Development; Income Distribution; Migration

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