Not All that Glitters is Gold: Gold Boom, Child Labor and Schooling in Colombia

43 Pages Posted: 31 Aug 2014

See all articles by Rafael J. Santos

Rafael J. Santos

Universidad de los Andes, Colombia - Department of Economics

Date Written: August 6, 2014

Abstract

This paper estimates the impact of the boom in international gold prices on child labor and schooling in Colombia. I first set up a simple agricultural household model of child labor and commodity prices hocks which guides the empirical analysis. Then, I use individual level information from the censuses of 1985, 1993 (when prices where stable) and 2005 (when prices surged) merged with regional data on gold production capabilities. I define Gold Boom as an interaction between regional gold production capabilities and the international price of gold. I find that child labor is increasing (0.3 standard deviations) and school attendance is decreasing (0.9 standard deviations) in the measure of gold boom. Accordingly, the gold boom decreases school attainment (0.2 standard deviations). This is consistent with the model when initial child labor is low and substitution effects dominate income effects. Finally, I find that the years of education of the head of the head of the household but not her ownership of assets mitigate the collateral effects of the gold boom.

Keywords: Colombia, Natural Resources, Gold mining, Child Labor, Education

JEL Classification: D04; D13; I20; J22; O10; O12

Suggested Citation

Santos, Rafael J., Not All that Glitters is Gold: Gold Boom, Child Labor and Schooling in Colombia (August 6, 2014). Documento CEDE No. 2014-31. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2489203 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2489203

Rafael J. Santos (Contact Author)

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

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

Register to save articles to
your library

Register

Paper statistics

Downloads
171
Abstract Views
748
rank
177,843
PlumX Metrics