NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

NBER Working Papers by Maheshwor Shrestha

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Working Papers

August 2013You Get What You Pay For: Schooling Incentives and Child Labor
with Eric V. Edmonds: w19279
Can efforts to promote education deter child labor? We report on the findings of a field experiment where a conditional transfer incentivized the schooling of children associated with carpet factories in Nepal. We find that schooling increases and child involvement in carpet weaving decreases when schooling is incentivized. As a simple static labor supply model would predict, we observe that treated children resort to their counterfactual level of school attendance and carpet weaving when schooling is no longer incentivized. From a child labor policy perspective, our findings imply that “You get what you pay for” when schooling incentives are used to combat hazardous child labor.
December 2012The Impact of Minimum Age of Employment Regulation on Child Labor and Schooling: Evidence from UNICEF MICS Countries
with Eric V. Edmonds: w18623
Promoting minimum age of employment regulation has been a centerpiece in child labor policy for the last 15 years. If enforced, minimum age regulation would change the age profile of paid child employment. Using micro-data from 59 mostly low-income countries, we observe that age can explain less than 1 percent of the variation in child participation in paid employment. In contrast, child-invariant household attributes account for 63 percent of the variation in participation in paid employment. While age may explain little of the variation in paid employment, minimum age of employment regulation could simultaneously impact time allocation. We do not observe evidence consistent with enforcement of minimum age regulation in any country examined, although light work regulation appears to have ...

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