DP7203 | Child Care Provision: Semiparametric Evidence from a Randomized Experiment in Mexico.

Publication Date

01/03/2009

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Abstract

We semiparametrically estimate the impact of the Mexican conditional cash transfer program Oportunidades on the time mothers and older sisters spend taking care of children aged under 3, using the randomization of the program placement and the methodology in Lewbel (2000). Results support the existence of substitution effects: mothers in treatment households are more likely to substitute for their older daughters? time to child care. As a result, daughters devote more time to schooling and less taking care of their younger siblings. Overall, total household time allocated to child care increases. These findings indicate that Oportunidades not only fosters human capital accumulation through keeping teenage girls in school but also through more and arguably better (mother provided) child care.