Parental Leave and Children's Schooling Outcomes: Quasi-Experimental Evidence from a Large Parental Leave Reform

50 Pages Posted: 20 Sep 2013

See all articles by Natalia Danzer

Natalia Danzer

CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute) - Ifo Institute

Victor Lavy

University of Warwick - Department of Economics; Hebrew University of Jerusalem - Department of Economics; Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR); National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Date Written: September 2013

Abstract

This paper investigates the question whether long-term human capital outcomes are affected by the duration of maternity leave, i.e. by the time mothers spend at home with their newborn before returning to work. Employing RD and difference-in-difference approaches, this paper exploits an unanticipated reform in Austria which extended the maximum duration of paid and job protected parental leave from 12 to 24 months for children born on July 1, 1990 or later. We use test scores from the Austrian PISA test of birth cohorts 1990 and 1987 as measure of human capital. The evidence suggest no significant overall impact of the extended parental leave mandate on standardized test scores at age 15, but that the subgroup of boys of highly educated mothers have benefited from this reform while boys of low educated mothers were harmed by it.

Suggested Citation

Danzer, Natalia and Lavy, Victor, Parental Leave and Children's Schooling Outcomes: Quasi-Experimental Evidence from a Large Parental Leave Reform (September 2013). NBER Working Paper No. w19452. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2328499

Natalia Danzer (Contact Author)

CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute) - Ifo Institute ( email )

Poschinger Str. 5
Munich, 01069
Germany

Victor Lavy

University of Warwick - Department of Economics ( email )

Coventry CV4 7AL
United Kingdom

Hebrew University of Jerusalem - Department of Economics ( email )

Mount Scopus
Jerusalem, 91905
Israel
+972 2 588 3245 (Phone)
+972 2 581 6071 (Fax)

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

London
United Kingdom

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

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