Cognitive and Non-Cognitive Costs of Daycare 0–2 for Girls

48 Pages Posted: 7 Mar 2016

See all articles by Margherita Fort

Margherita Fort

University of Bologna; Ifo Institute, CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute), Ifo Institute; IZA

Andrea Ichino

University of Bologna

Giulio Zanella

University of Bologna

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Abstract

Exploiting admission thresholds in a Regression Discontinuity Design, we study the causal effects of daycare at age 0–2 on cognitive and non-cognitive outcomes at age 8–14. One additional month in daycare reduces IQ by 0.5% (4.5% of a standard deviation). Effects for conscientiousness are small and imprecisely estimated. Psychologists suggest that children in daycare experience fewer one-to-one interactions with adults, which should be particularly relevant for girls who are more capable than boys of exploiting cognitive stimuli at an early age. In line with this interpretation, losses for girls are larger and more significant, especially in affluent families.

Keywords: daycare, childcare, child development, cognitive skills, non-cognitive skills

JEL Classification: J13, I20, I28, H75

Suggested Citation

Fort, Margherita and Ichino, Andrea and Zanella, Giulio, Cognitive and Non-Cognitive Costs of Daycare 0–2 for Girls. IZA Discussion Paper No. 9756, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2742544 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2742544

Margherita Fort (Contact Author)

University of Bologna ( email )

Piazza Scaravilli 2
Bologna, 40100
Italy

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

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Munich
Germany

IZA ( email )

Andrea Ichino

University of Bologna ( email )

Piazza Scaravilli 1
40126 Bologna, fc 47100
Italy
+39 349 5965919 (Phone)

Giulio Zanella

University of Bologna ( email )

Piazza Scaravilli 2
Bologna, 40100
Italy

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