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Children and parents time use: Empirical evidence on investment in human capital in France, Italy and Germany

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  • Ana Rute Cardoso
  • Elsa Fontainha
  • Chiara Monfardini

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Abstract

We analyze a mechanism that has been disregarded in the literature on parental investment in children, as little attention has been devoted to the choices made by children themselves. We model directly time use by youngsters into activities related to the acquisition of human capital, considering not just the decision on study time, but also on socialization/networking at young age, which can enhance personal interaction skills. We provide new empirical evidence for three European countries (France, Italy and Germany) on the link between time allocation by parents and time allocation by youngsters, highlighting country-specific patterns as well as cross-country differences. We run fractional regression models and double hurdle models on multi-member household micro data on time use. Countries diverge concerning the association between parents and youngsters allocation of time to socializing and to reading and studying activities, with Italy standing out as the country where that association, in particular between youngster and mother, is strongest. Our results are consistent with different mechanisms: parental role model directly influencing children behavior, intergenerational transmission of preferences, or network effects, as individuals adapt their behavior to social patterns.

Suggested Citation

  • Ana Rute Cardoso & Elsa Fontainha & Chiara Monfardini, 2008. "Children and parents time use: Empirical evidence on investment in human capital in France, Italy and Germany," CHILD Working Papers wp17_08, CHILD - Centre for Household, Income, Labour and Demographic economics - ITALY.
  • Handle: RePEc:wpc:wplist:wp17_08
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    Cited by:

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    2. Giulia Bettin & Riccardo Lucchetti & Alberto Zazzaro, 2009. "Income, consumption and remittances: evidence from immigrants to Australia," Mo.Fi.R. Working Papers 34, Money and Finance Research group (Mo.Fi.R.) - Univ. Politecnica Marche - Dept. Economic and Social Sciences.
    3. Paula Rodríguez-Modroño & Lina Gálvez-Muñoz & Mauricio Matus-López & Mónica Domínguez-Serrano, 2013. "A gender analysis of children’s well-being and capabilities through time use data," Department of Economics (DEMB) 0009, University of Modena and Reggio Emilia, Department of Economics "Marco Biagi".
    4. Ylenia Brilli, 2012. "Public and parental investments in children. Evidence from the literature on non-parental child care," CHILD Working Papers Series 6, Centre for Household, Income, Labour and Demographic Economics (CHILD) - CCA.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    study time; socializing; networking; youth; intergenerational transmission of preferences; fractional regression models; double hurdle models;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • J22 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Time Allocation and Labor Supply
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
    • J13 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Fertility; Family Planning; Child Care; Children; Youth
    • C21 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Cross-Sectional Models; Spatial Models; Treatment Effect Models
    • C24 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Truncated and Censored Models; Switching Regression Models; Threshold Regression Models

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