Quantifying the Life-Cycle Benefits of a Prototypical Early Childhood Program

46 Pages Posted: 5 Jun 2017

See all articles by Jorge Luis García

Jorge Luis García

affiliation not provided to SSRN

James J. Heckman

University of Chicago - Department of Economics; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER); American Bar Foundation; Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA); CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

Duncan Ermini Leaf

University of Southern California - Schaeffer Center for Health Policy and Economics

María Prados

University of Southern California

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper

Date Written: June 2017

Abstract

This paper quantifies and aggregates the multiple lifetime benefits of an influential high-quality early childhood program with outcomes measured through midlife. Guided by economic theory, we supplement experimental data with non-experimental data to forecast the life-cycle benefits and costs of the program. Our point estimate of the internal rate of return is 13.7% with an associated benefit/cost ratio of 7.3. We account for model estimation and forecasting error and present estimates from extensive sensitivity analyses. This paper is a template for synthesizing experimental and non-experimental data using economic theory to estimate the long-run life-cycle benefits of social programs.

Suggested Citation

Garcia, Jorge Luis and Heckman, James J. and Ermini Leaf, Duncan and Prados, Maria, Quantifying the Life-Cycle Benefits of a Prototypical Early Childhood Program (June 2017). NBER Working Paper No. w23479. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2980587

Jorge Luis Garcia (Contact Author)

affiliation not provided to SSRN

James J. Heckman

University of Chicago - Department of Economics ( email )

1126 East 59th Street
Chicago, IL 60637
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773-702-0634 (Phone)
773-702-8490 (Fax)

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

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American Bar Foundation

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Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA)

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Germany

CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

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Munich, DE-81679
Germany

Duncan Ermini Leaf

University of Southern California - Schaeffer Center for Health Policy and Economics ( email )

635 Downey Way
Los Angeles, CA 90089-3333
United States
213-821-6474 (Phone)

Maria Prados

University of Southern California ( email )

635 Downey Way
Los Angeles, CA 90089-3332
United States

HOME PAGE: http://www-bcf.usc.edu/~prados/index.html

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