nep-dem New Economics Papers
on Demographic Economics
Issue of 2017‒06‒18
six papers chosen by
Michele Battisti
ifo Institut

  1. Father Absence and the Educational Gender Gap By Shelly Lundberg
  2. The Role of Works Councils for Severance Payments By Christian Grund; Johannes Martin
  3. The Causal Effect of Retirement on Health Services Utilization: Evidence from Urban Vietnam By Dang, Thang
  4. No free lunch, Buddy: past housing transfers and informal care later in life By Emanuele Ciani; Claudio Deiana
  5. New evidence on interregional mobility of students in tertiary education: the case of Italy By Ilaria De Angelis; Vincenzo Mariani; Roberto Torrini
  6. Reducing Inequality Through Dynamic Complementarity: Evidence from Head Start and Public School Spending By Rucker C. Johnson; C. Kirabo Jackson

  1. By: Shelly Lundberg (University of California Santa Barbara)
    Abstract: The educational attainment of young women now exceeds that of young men in most of the developed world, and women account for about 60% of new four-year college graduates in the United States. Several studies have suggested that the increase in single-parent households may be contributing to the growing gender gap in education, as boys are more vulnerable to the negative effects of father absence and economic disadvantage than girls. Using data on recent cohorts of young men and women from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent to Adult Health (Add Health), I find evidence consistent with other studies that boys are relatively more likely to experience problems in school, including school suspensions, when their father is absent, but also that girls are relatively more likely to experience depression in adolescence, particularly in step-father families. By the time Add Health subjects are young adults, there is no evidence that father absence early in life is more strongly associated with lower rates of college graduation for men, compared to women, in either cross-sectional or family fixed-effect models.
    Keywords: education, college graduation, gender, family structure, father absence, school quality
    JEL: I20 J12 J16
    Date: 2017–06
  2. By: Christian Grund; Johannes Martin
    Abstract: Using representative German employee data, we analyse the role of works councils for the incidence of severance payments subsequent to dismissals. While there is a positive relation with severance payments after those dismissals which stem from plant closings, the incidence of a works council is negatively associated with severance pay subsequent to individual layoffs. In both cases, we find a negative moderating effect of individuals’ higher re-employment chances. We also explore gender differences and differences between the types of previously held jobs.
    Keywords: Dismissals, Layoffs, Plant closings, Severance pay, Works councils
    JEL: J53 J63 J65
    Date: 2017
  3. By: Dang, Thang
    Abstract: Access to medical services is significantly essential for retaining and improving health status for aging population. Whilst retired individuals tend to have more time for the use of health services, there is only inadequate evidence evaluating the causal effect of retirement on health services utilization. To fulfill this gap in the literature especially from developing countries, this paper estimates the causal effect of retirement on the probability and the frequency of doctor visits at public health facilities in urban Vietnam. Employing authorized retirement ages for both men and women in Vietnam as instruments for the probability to be retired, the paper shows that retirement significantly increases some outcomes of outpatient health services for both male and female. In particular, the baseline 2SLS estimates indicate that men who are retired are more likely to have any outpatient medical visit than those who are not retired by about 36.1%. Meanwhile, retirement rises both the likelihood and the frequency of outpatient visits for female by roughly 31% and 1.75 times respectively. However, this paper finds statistically insignificant impacts of retirement on utilization outcomes for inpatient services.
    Keywords: Retirement; Health services utilization; Developing countries
    JEL: C26 I10 J26
    Date: 2017–06–13
  4. By: Emanuele Ciani (Bank of Italy); Claudio Deiana (European Commission, Joint Research Centre)
    Abstract: Previous empirical literature on the relationship between intergenerational transfers of assets and services has mostly focused on contemporary exchanges. In contrast, we provide novel evidence that parents who helped their adult children in the past are rewarded by a greater likelihood of receiving informal care later in life. To this end we use Italian data to look at retrospective information about how parents help their children to purchase houses when they get married. Our estimates show a positive association with the current provision of informal care, which is robust to controlling for a large set of individual and family characteristics. We provide evidence that this can be explained by various self-interest motives, relating to theories based either on bilateral exchange or on the presence of a third generation of grandchildren, such as those including a demonstration effect or the concept of a family constitution.
    Keywords: informal care, housing, intergenerational transfers, geographical proximity.
    JEL: D10 J13 J14
    Date: 2017–06
  5. By: Ilaria De Angelis (Bank of Italy); Vincenzo Mariani (Bank of Italy); Roberto Torrini (Bank of Italy)
    Abstract: A relatively low geographical mobility of students in the Centre and North of the country and a large incidence of movers from southern regions to universities located in the Centre and North are well-established features of the Italian academic system. Exploiting a novel administrative dataset on academic enrolments, this paper shows that the interregional mobility of Italian students has increased in recent years. We highlight that the increase in mobility, which has occurred in a period of declining entry rates, is not attributable to a change in the composition of the enrolling students. We investigate some of the main drivers of student mobility by relating regional flows to the attractiveness of universities and show that mobility is positively associated with the quality of research and teaching and with the job prospects offered by the hosting university. Student flows are instead negatively correlated with the distance between the university and the region of origin and with drop-out rates. The empirical evidence also suggests that in recent years the distance from the university of destination has become less relevant in explaining mobility, whereas the role played by university quality has increased.
    Keywords: university, student mobility, quality of research, labour market JEL Classification: I20, I23
    Date: 2017–06
  6. By: Rucker C. Johnson; C. Kirabo Jackson
    Abstract: We explore whether early childhood human-capital investments are complementary to those made later in life. Using the Panel Study of Income Dynamics, we compare the adult outcomes of cohorts who were differentially exposed to policy-induced changes in pre-school (Head Start) spending and school-finance-reform-induced changes in public K12 school spending during childhood, depending on place and year of birth. Difference-in-difference instrumental variables and sibling- difference estimates indicate that, for poor children, increases in Head Start spending and increases in public K12 spending each individually increased educational attainment and earnings, and reduced the likelihood of both poverty and incarceration in adulthood. The benefits of Head Start spending were larger when followed by access to better-funded public K12 schools, and the increases in K12 spending were more efficacious for poor children who were exposed to higher levels of Head Start spending during their preschool years. The findings suggest that early investments in the skills of disadvantaged children that are followed by sustained educational investments over time can effectively break the cycle of poverty.
    JEL: I20 I24 I28 J20 J68
    Date: 2017–06

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