When Rationing Plays a Role

32 Pages Posted: 17 Oct 2016

See all articles by Daniela Del Boca

Daniela Del Boca

University of Turin - Department of Economics; IZA Institute of Labor Economics; Centre for Household, Income, Labour and Demographic Economics (CHILD)

Chiara Pronzato

University of Essex - Institute for Social and Economic Research (ISER)

Giuseppe Sorrenti

University of Zurich

Date Written: October 2016

Abstract

Our study explores the impact of selection criteria on the costs and benefits of early child care for mothers' employment, child development, and municipalities' revenues by exploiting the selection criteria of different Italian municipalities in assigning child care slots. In Italy, only around 13% of the demand for public child care coverage is met, and the number of applications exceeds the number of places in child care services in all regions. In conditions of excess demand, municipalities introduce selection criteria to give priority to families for whom access to public child care appears to be more valuable. We analyse through simulations the consequences of introducing different selection criteria, using a representative Italian sample of households with children under three years of age (EU-SILC), and the selection criteria employed by six representative Italian municipalities. Our results have interesting policy implications. The benefits for child outcomes and mothers' employment are stronger in municipalities where the selection criteria give priority to more disadvantaged households. However, in these contexts selected households are less able to contribute to the financial sustainability of the service.

Suggested Citation

Del Boca, Daniela and Pronzato, Chiara and Sorrenti, Giuseppe, When Rationing Plays a Role (October 2016). CEPR Discussion Paper No. DP11574. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2853393

Daniela Del Boca (Contact Author)

University of Turin - Department of Economics ( email )

Via Po, 53
Torino, 10124
Italy

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

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

Centre for Household, Income, Labour and Demographic Economics (CHILD)

Turin, TO
Italy

Chiara Pronzato

University of Essex - Institute for Social and Economic Research (ISER) ( email )

Wivenhoe Park
Colchester CO4 3SQ
United Kingdom

Giuseppe Sorrenti

University of Zurich ( email )

Rämistrasse 71
Zürich, CH-8006
Switzerland

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