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Estimating the Production Function for Human Capital: Results from a Randomized Controlled Trial in Colombia

52 Pages Posted: 27 Apr 2017  

Orazio Attanasio

University College London - Department of Economics; Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS); Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR); National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Sarah Cattan

Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS)

Emla Fitzsimons

Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS)

Costas Meghir

Yale University; Yale University - Cowles Foundation; Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS); National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER); Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR); IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Marta Rubio-Codina

Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS)

Date Written: April 26, 2017

Abstract

We examine the channels through which a randomized early childhood intervention in Colombia led to significant gains in cognitive and socio-emotional skills among a sample of disadvantaged children aged 12 to 24 months at baseline. We estimate the determinants of material and time investments in these children and evaluate the impact of the treatment on such investments. We then estimate the production functions for cognitive and socio-emotional skills. The effects of the program can be explained by increases in parental investments, which have strong effects on outcomes and are complementary to both maternal skills and child’s baseline skills.

Keywords: Early Childhood Development, Human Capital, Poverty Alleviation, Nonlinear Factor Models

JEL Classification: J13, J24, I24, I25, I32, O15

Suggested Citation

Attanasio, Orazio and Cattan, Sarah and Fitzsimons, Emla and Meghir, Costas and Rubio-Codina, Marta, Estimating the Production Function for Human Capital: Results from a Randomized Controlled Trial in Colombia (April 26, 2017). Cowles Foundation Discussion Paper No. 1987R. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2959147 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2959147

Orazio Attanasio

University College London - Department of Economics ( email )

Gower Street
London WC1E 6BT, WC1E 6BT
United Kingdom
+44 20 7679 5880 (Phone)
+44 20 7916 2775 (Fax)

Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS)

7 Ridgmount Street
London, WC1E 7AE
United Kingdom

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

77 Bastwick Street
London, EC1V 3PZ
United Kingdom

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

Sarah Cattan

Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) ( email )

7 Ridgmount Street
London, WC1E 7AE
United Kingdom

Emla Fitzsimons

Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) ( email )

7 Ridgmount Street
London, WC1E 7AE
United Kingdom

Costas Meghir (Contact Author)

Yale University ( email )

37 Hillhouse avenue
New Haven, CT CT 06511
United States
+12034323558 (Phone)

Yale University - Cowles Foundation ( email )

Box 208281
New Haven, CT 06520-8281
United States

Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) ( email )

7 Ridgmount Street
London, WC1E 7AE
United Kingdom

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) ( email )

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

77 Bastwick Street
London, EC1V 3PZ
United Kingdom

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

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

Marta Rubio-Codina

Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) ( email )

7 Ridgmount Street
London, WC1E 7AE
United Kingdom

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