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Child Labor

  • Christopher R. Udry


    (Yale University, Economic Growth Center)

Child labor exists because it is the best response people can find in intolerable circumstances. Poverty and child labor are mutually reinforcing: because their parents are poor, children must work and not attend school, and then grow up poor. Child labor has two important special features. First, when financial markets are imperfect, the separation in time between the immediate benefits and long-delayed costs of sending children to work lead to too much child labor. Second, the costs and benefits of child labor are borne by different people. Targeted subsidies for school attendance are very effective in reducing child labor because they successfully address both of these problems.

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Paper provided by Yale School of Management in its series Yale School of Management Working Papers with number ysm399.

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Date of creation: 28 Jul 2004
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Handle: RePEc:ysm:somwrk:ysm399
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  1. Christopher R. Udry & Esther Duflo, 2004. "Intrahousehold Resource Allocation in Cote D'Ivoire: Social Norms, Separate Accounts and Consumption Choices," Yale School of Management Working Papers ysm407, Yale School of Management.
  2. Schultz, T. Paul, 2001. "School subsidies for the poor," FCND briefs 102, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
  3. Esther Duflo, 2003. "Grandmothers and Granddaughters: Old-Age Pensions and Intrahousehold Allocation in South Africa," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 17(1), pages 1-25, June.
  4. Drusilla K. Brown, 2000. "International Trade and Core Labour Standards: A Survey of the Recent Literature," OECD Labour Market and Social Policy Occasional Papers 43, OECD Publishing.
  5. Ranjan, Priya, 1999. "An economic analysis of child labor," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 64(1), pages 99-105, July.
  6. Haddad, Lawrence & Hoddinott, John & Alderman, Harold & DEC, 1994. "Intrahousehold resource allocation : an overview," Policy Research Working Paper Series 1255, The World Bank.
  7. 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.
  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. Udry, Christopher, 1996. "Gender, Agricultural Production, and the Theory of the Household," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 104(5), pages 1010-46, October.
  10. Edmonds, Eric V., 2008. "Child Labor," Handbook of Development Economics, Elsevier.
  11. Eric Edmonds & Nina Pavcnik, 2002. "Does Globalization Increase Child Labor? Evidence from Vietnam," NBER Working Papers 8760, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Christopher Udry, 2003. "Child Labor," Working Papers 856, Economic Growth Center, Yale University.
  13. Ray, Ranjan, 2000. "Child Labor, Child Schooling, and Their Interaction with Adult Labor: Empirical Evidence for Peru and Pakistan," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 14(2), pages 347-67, May.
  14. Chiappori, Pierre-Andre, 1988. "Rational Household Labor Supply," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 56(1), pages 63-90, January.
  15. Jacoby, Hanan G & Skoufias, Emmanuel, 1997. "Risk, Financial Markets, and Human Capital in a Developing Country," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 64(3), pages 311-35, July.
  16. George Psacharopoulos, 1997. "Child labor versus educational attainment Some evidence from Latin America," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 10(4), pages 377-386.
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