The Effect of Maternal Employment and Child Care on Children's Cognitive Development

37 Pages Posted: 22 Oct 2008

See all articles by Raquel Bernal

Raquel Bernal

Universidad de los Andes, Colombia - Department of Economics

Abstract

This article develops and estimates a dynamic model of employment and child care decisions of women after childbirth to evaluate the effects of these choices on children's cognitive ability. We use data from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth to estimate it. Results indicate that the effects of maternal employment and child care on children's ability are negative and sizable. Having a mother that works full-time and uses child care during one year is associated with a reduction in ability test scores of approximately 1.8% (0.13 standard deviations). We assess the impact of policies related to parental leave and child care on children's outcomes.

Suggested Citation

Bernal, Raquel, The Effect of Maternal Employment and Child Care on Children's Cognitive Development. International Economic Review, Vol. 49, Issue 4, pp. 1173-1209, November 2008. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1287399 or http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1468-2354.2008.00510.x

Raquel Bernal (Contact Author)

Universidad de los Andes, Colombia - Department of Economics ( email )

Carrera 1a No. 18A-10
Santafe de Bogota, AA4976
Colombia

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