A Flying Start? Long Term Consequences of Maternal Time Investments in Children During Their First Year of Life

70 Pages Posted: 29 Nov 2010

See all articles by Pedro Manuel Carneiro

Pedro Manuel Carneiro

University College London - Department of Economics; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Katrine Vellesen Løken

University of Bergen - Department of Economics

Kjell G. Salvanes

Norwegian School of Economics (NHH) - Department of Economics; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

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Date Written: November 2010

Abstract

We study the impact of increasing the time that the mother spends with her child in the first year of her life. In particular, we examine a reform that increased paid and unpaid maternity leave entitlements in Norway. In response to this reform, maternal leave increased on average by 4 months and family income was unaffected. We find that this increase in maternal time with the child led to a 2.7 percentage points decline in high school dropout rates, going up to 5.2 percentage points for those whose mothers have less than 10 years of education. This effect is especially large for children of mothers who, in the absence of the reform, would take very low levels of unpaid leave. Finally, there is a weak impact on college attendance. The results also suggest that much of the impact of early time with the child is at low levels of maternal education.

Keywords: Child Development, Maternity Leave

JEL Classification: J0

Suggested Citation

Carneiro, Pedro Manuel and Løken, Katrine Vellesen and Salvanes, Kjell G., A Flying Start? Long Term Consequences of Maternal Time Investments in Children During Their First Year of Life (November 2010). CEPR Discussion Paper No. DP8124. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1714896

Pedro Manuel Carneiro (Contact Author)

University College London - Department of Economics ( email )

Gower Street
London WC1E 6BT, WC1E 6BT
United Kingdom

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

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

Katrine Vellesen Løken

University of Bergen - Department of Economics ( email )

Fosswinckelsgt. 6
N-5007 Bergen, 5007
Norway

Kjell G. Salvanes

Norwegian School of Economics (NHH) - Department of Economics ( email )

Helleveien 30
N-5035 Bergen
Norway
+47 5 595 9315 (Phone)
+47 5 595 9543 (Fax)

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

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

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