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Wealth gradients in early childhood cognitive development in five Latin American countries

Listed author(s):
  • Schady,, Norbert
  • Behrman, Jere
  • Araujo, Maria Caridad
  • Azuero,, Rodrigo
  • Bernal, Raquel
  • Bravo, David
  • Lopez-Boo, Florencia
  • Macours, Karen
  • Marshall, Daniela
  • Paxson, Christina
  • Vakis, Renos

Research from the United States shows that gaps in early cognitive and noncognitive abilities appear early in the life cycle. Little is known about this important question for developing countries. This paper provides new evidence of sharp differences in cognitive development by socioeconomic status in early childhood for five Latin American countries. To help with comparability, the paper uses the same measure of receptive language ability for all five countries. It finds important differences in development in early childhood across countries, and steep socioeconomic gradients within every country. For the three countries where panel data to follow children over time exists, there are few substantive changes in scores once children enter school. These results are robust to different ways of defining socioeconomic status, to different ways of standardizing outcomes, and to selective non-response on the measure of cognitive development.

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File URL: http://www-wds.worldbank.org/external/default/WDSContentServer/WDSP/IB/2014/02/14/000158349_20140214144133/Rendered/PDF/WPS6779.pdf
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Paper provided by The World Bank in its series Policy Research Working Paper Series with number 6779.

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Date of creation: 01 Feb 2014
Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:6779
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  1. Manski, Charles F, 1990. "Nonparametric Bounds on Treatment Effects," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(2), pages 319-323, May.
  2. Karen Macours & Norbert Schady & Renos Vakis, 2012. "Cash Transfers, Behavioral Changes, and Cognitive Development in Early Childhood: Evidence from a Randomized Experiment," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 4(2), pages 247-273, April.
  3. Alan S. Blinder, 1973. "Wage Discrimination: Reduced Form and Structural Estimates," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 8(4), pages 436-455.
  4. Orazio P. Attanasio & Camila Fernández & Emla O. A. Fitzsimons & Sally M. Grantham-McGregor & Costas Meghir & Marta Rubio-Codina, 2014. "Using the Infrastructure of a Conditional Cash Transfer Program to Deliver a Scalable Integrated Early Child Development Program in Colombia: Cluster Randomized Controlled Trial," Mathematica Policy Research Reports 62cf429ea5b74678a945aa87b, Mathematica Policy Research.
  5. Christina Paxson & Norbert Schady, 2007. "Cognitive Development among Young Children in Ecuador: The Roles of Wealth, Health, and Parenting," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 42(1).
  6. repec:idb:brikps:publication-detail,7101.html?id=32886 is not listed on IDEAS
  7. Karen Macours & Norbert Schady & Renos Vakis, 2012. "Cash Transfers, Behavioral Changes, and Cognitive Development in Early Childhood: Evidence from a Randomized Experiment," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 4(2), pages 247-273, April.
  8. Greg J. Duncan & Katherine Magnuson, 2013. "Investing in Preschool Programs," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 27(2), pages 109-132, Spring.
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