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Human Capital Investments in Children: A Comparative Analysis of the Role of Parent-Child Shared Time in Selected Countries

35 Pages Posted: 2 Aug 2010  

Eva Osterbacka

Åbo Akademi University

Joachim Merz

Research Institute on Professions; Leuphana University of Lueneburg; Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA)

Cathleen D. Zick

University of Utah - Department of Family and Consumer Studies (FCS)

Abstract

Parents invest in their children's human capital in several ways. We investigate the extent to which the levels and composition of parent-child time varies across countries with different welfare regimes: Finland, Germany and the United States. We test the hypothesis of parent-child time as a form of human capital investment in children using a propensity score treatment effects approach that accounts for the possible endogenous nature of time use and human capital investment. Result: There is considerable evidence of welfare regime effects on parent-child shared time. Our results provide mixed support for the hypothesis that non-care related parent-child time is human capital enriching. The strongest support is found in the case of leisure time and eating time.

Keywords: parent-child time, comparative research, welfare regimes, Finland, Germany, USA, treatment effects, propensity score matching

JEL Classification: D1, J24, J22, H43

Suggested Citation

Osterbacka, Eva and Merz, Joachim and Zick, Cathleen D., Human Capital Investments in Children: A Comparative Analysis of the Role of Parent-Child Shared Time in Selected Countries. IZA Discussion Paper No. 5084. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1651709

Eva Osterbacka (Contact Author)

Åbo Akademi University

Piispankatu 16
Abo, Turku FIN-20500
Finland

Joachim Merz

Research Institute on Professions ( email )

Lüneburg
Germany

Leuphana University of Lueneburg

Scharnhorststrasse 1
Lüneburg, 21314
Germany

Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA)

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

Cathleen D. Zick

University of Utah - Department of Family and Consumer Studies (FCS) ( email )

UT
United States
801-581-7712 (Phone)
801-581-5156 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.fcs.utah.edu/faculty/zick/

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