Health Effects of Child Work: Evidence from Rural Vietnam

38 Pages Posted: 7 Apr 2004

See all articles by Owen A. O'Donnell

Owen A. O'Donnell

University of Macedonia

Furio C. Rosati

United Nations - UCW Program; University of Rome Tor Vergata - Faculty of Economics

Eddy van Doorslaer

Erasmus School of Economics

Date Written: April 2004

Abstract

We test whether work in childhood impacts on health. We focus on agricultural work, the dominant form of child work worldwide. Data are from the Vietnam Living Standards Survey, 1992-93 and 1997-98. We correct for both unobservable heterogeneity and simultaneity biases. Instruments include small area labour market and education conditions obtained from community level surveys. We use three indicators of health: body mass index; reported illness; and, height growth. There is clear evidence of a healthy worker selection effect. We find little evidence of a contemporaneous impact of child work on health but work undertaken during childhood raises the risk of illness up to five years later and the risk is increasing with the duration of work. There is no evidence that work impedes the growth of the child.

Keywords: Child labour, health, Vietnam

JEL Classification: I12, J13, J22, J28, J43

Suggested Citation

O'Donnell, Owen A. and Rosati, Furio C. and van Doorslaer, Eddy, Health Effects of Child Work: Evidence from Rural Vietnam (April 2004). CEIS Working Paper No. 53, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=528003 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.528003

Owen A. O'Donnell (Contact Author)

University of Macedonia ( email )

156 Egnatia St.
P.O. 1591
Thessaloniki, 54006
Greece

Furio C. Rosati

United Nations - UCW Program ( email )

ILO Office for Italy and San Marino
Via Panisperna 28
I-00186 Rome
Italy

HOME PAGE: http://www.ucw-project.org

University of Rome Tor Vergata - Faculty of Economics ( email )

Via Columbia n.2
Rome, rome 00100
Italy
6 2020 500 (Fax)

Eddy Van Doorslaer

Erasmus School of Economics ( email )

Netherlands

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