Do Children Benefit from Internet Access? Experimental Evidence from a Developing Country

55 Pages Posted: 26 Dec 2018

See all articles by Ofer Malamud

Ofer Malamud

University of Chicago - Harris School of Public Policy; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Santiago Cueto

Group for the Analysis of Development (GRADE)

Julian Cristia

Inter-American Development Bank

Diether W. Beuermann

University of Maryland - College Park; Durham Business School; Inter-American Development Bank (IADB); Universidad de Lima - Facultad de Economia

Date Written: November 2018

Abstract

This paper provides experimental evidence for the impact of home internet access on a broad range of child outcomes in Peru. Children who were randomly chosen to receive laptops with high-speed internet access are compared with i) those who did not receive laptops and ii) those who only received laptops without internet. It is found that providing free internet access led to improved computer and internet proficiency relative to those without laptops and improved internet proficiency compared to those with laptops only. However, there were no significant effects of internet access on math and reading achievement, cognitive skills, self-esteem, teacher perceptions, or school grades when compared to either group. Reasons for the absence of impacts on these key outcomes are explored with survey questions, time-diaries, and computer logs.

Keywords: : Internet access, Education, Academic achievement, Digital skills, Cognitive skills, Technology, Experimental

JEL Classification: C93, I21, I28

Suggested Citation

Malamud, Ofer and Cueto, Santiago and Cristia, Julian and Beuermann, Diether Wolfgang, Do Children Benefit from Internet Access? Experimental Evidence from a Developing Country (November 2018). IDB Working Paper No. IDB-WP-960, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3305515 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3305515

Ofer Malamud (Contact Author)

University of Chicago - Harris School of Public Policy ( email )

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United States

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) ( email )

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Santiago Cueto

Group for the Analysis of Development (GRADE) ( email )

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Lima 4
Peru

Julian Cristia

Inter-American Development Bank ( email )

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Diether Wolfgang Beuermann

University of Maryland - College Park ( email )

College Park, MD 20742
United States
240-838-9376 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://www.econ.umd.edu/~beuermann

Durham Business School ( email )

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United Kingdom

HOME PAGE: http://www.dur.ac.uk/dbs

Inter-American Development Bank (IADB) ( email )

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202-623-2172 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://www.iadb.org

Universidad de Lima - Facultad de Economia ( email )

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Lima, Lima 33
Peru

HOME PAGE: http://www.ulima.edu.pe

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