nep-dem New Economics Papers
on Demographic Economics
Issue of 2016‒02‒12
five papers chosen by
Michele Battisti
ifo Institut

  1. The evolution of the gender gap in industrialized countries. By Olivetti, Claudia; Petrongolo, Barbara
  3. Migrants, Ancestors, and Investments By Burchardi, Konrad B.; Chaney, Thomas; Hassan, Tarek
  4. How Can Community Participation Improve Educational Outcomes? Experimental Evidence from a School-Based Management Project in Burkina Faso By Kozuka, Eiji; Sawada, Yasuyuki; Todo, Yasuyuki
  5. Cognitive and non-cognitive skills for the Peruvian labor market : addressing measurement error through latent skills estimations By Cunningham,Wendy; Parra Torrado,Mónica; Sarzosa,Miguel Alonso

  1. By: Olivetti, Claudia; Petrongolo, Barbara
    Abstract: Women in developed economies have made major inroads in labor markets throughout the past century, but remaining gender differences in pay and employment seem remarkably persistent. This paper documents long-run trends in female employment, working hours and relative wages for a wide cross-section of developed economies. It reviews existing work on the factors driving gender convergence, and novel perspectives on remaining gender gaps. The paper finally emphasizes the interplay between gender trends and the evolution of the industry structure. Based on a shift-share decomposition, it shows that the growth in the service share can explain at least half of the overall variation in female hours, both over time and across countries.
    Keywords: female employment; gender gaps; industry structure
    JEL: E24 J16 J31
    Date: 2016–01
  2. By: Sugata Bag, Suman Seth and Anish Gupta (Centre for Development Economics, Delhi School of Economics, University of Delhi, India)
    Abstract: Urban population in India has been rising rapidly as millions of migrants are moving to urban areas aspiring for higher earning and better living. The number of urban poor is also growing and a significant number of these poor find spaces in slums and continue to struggle for better living standards. Improving their conditions call for significant efforts from the governments for better policy designs. However, better policy design requires understanding the commonalities and differences across slums within and between cities. In this paper, we conduct a comparative study of representative slums across three largest metro cities in India through primary surveys. We find certain characteristics, such as large average household size, poor housing quality, low female labour market participation and high school enrolment rates among children, to be common across and within three cities. Our study however reveals crucial differences between the cities in the demographic pattern of migration and its temporal element. And that in turn brings out considerable heterogeneity among different groups within slums of each cities with respect to living standards, access to civic amenities like sanitation facilities and drinking water. Moreover, there exists major cross-city differences in adult literacy rates across gender, consumption pattern, and subjective wellbeing. Overall, we find that slums in Mumbai on average perform much better in various living condition and social indicators than slums in Delhi and Kolkata.
    Date: 2016–02
  3. By: Burchardi, Konrad B.; Chaney, Thomas; Hassan, Tarek
    Abstract: We use 130 years of data on historical migrations to the United States to show a causal effect of the ancestry composition of US counties on foreign direct investment (FDI) sent and received by local firms. To isolate the causal effect of ancestry on FDI, we build a simple reduced-form model of migrations: migrations from a foreign country to a US county at a given time depend on (i) a push factor, causing emigration from that foreign country to the entire United States, and (ii) a pull factor, causing immigration from all origins into that US county. The interaction between time-series variation in country-specific push factors and county-specific pull factors generates quasi-random variation in the allocation of migrants across US counties. We find that a doubling of the number of residents with ancestry from a given foreign country relative to the mean increases by 4.2 percentage points the probability that at least one local firm invests in that country, and increases by 31% the number of employees at domestic recipients of FDI from that country. The size of these effects increases with the ethnic diversity of the local population, the geographic distance to the origin country, and the ethno-linguistic fractionalization of the origin country.
    Keywords: foreign direct investment; international trade; migrations; networks; social ties
    JEL: J61 L14 O11
    Date: 2015–12
  4. By: Kozuka, Eiji; Sawada, Yasuyuki; Todo, Yasuyuki
    Abstract: Promoting community participation in school management is a widely found intervention in the developing world. While this type of program is generally believed to be effective, the actual evidence is not sufficient to inform policy makers on how community participation works in improving educational outcomes. To shed more light on this question, we conducted a randomized evaluation of an education program in Burkina Faso. The program was designed to build trust among community members and teachers, and encourage them to work together in school management. The results show that the intervention increased student enrollment, decreased student repetition, and lowered teacher absence. The results also indicate that it had a strong impact on class repetition by 6th grade boys, presumably reflecting parental priorities. This suggests that community participation can improve educational outcomes through empowering the community and enhancing social capital, but whether idealized results can be gained depends on the perception and the knowledge of the community members.
    Keywords: school-based management , community participation , randomized controlled trial (RCT) , education , impact evaluation
    Date: 2016–02–01
  5. By: Cunningham,Wendy; Parra Torrado,Mónica; Sarzosa,Miguel Alonso
    Abstract: Evidence from developed country data suggests that cognitive and non-cognitive skills contribute to improved labor market outcomes. This paper tests this hypothesis in a developing country by using an individual-level data set from Peru that incorporates modules to measure cognitive and non-cognitive skills. The paper estimates a structural latent model with unobserved heterogeneity to capture full ability rather than just measured skill. It also applies standard ordinary least squares techniques for comparison. The analysis confirms that cognitive and non-cognitive skills are positively correlated with a range of labor market outcomes in Peru. In particular, cognitive skills positively correlate with wages and the probability of being a wage worker, white-collar, and formal worker, with verbal fluency and numeric ability playing particularly strong roles. The results are robust to methodology. The patterns are less uniform for non-cognitive skills. For instance, perseverance of effort (grit) emerges strongly for most outcomes regardless of methodology. However, plasticity?an aggregation of openness to experience and emotional stability?is only correlated with employment, and only when using the structural latent model. The ordinary least squares method also finds that the disaggregated non-cognitive skills of kindness, cooperation, emotional stability, and openness to experience emerge significantly, mostly for the wage estimates. The different results derived from the ordinary least squares and the structural model with latent skills suggest strong measurement bias in most non-cognitive skills measurement. These findings, although only correlational because of the use of a single cross-section, suggest that recent efforts by the Peruvian government to incorporate non-cognitive skill development into the school curriculum are justified.
    Keywords: Education For All,Effective Schools and Teachers,Access&Equity in Basic Education,Educational Sciences,Primary Education
    Date: 2016–02–01

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