nep-ltv New Economics Papers
on Unemployment, Inequality and Poverty
Issue of 2022‒10‒24
four papers chosen by
Maximo Rossi
Universidad de la República

  1. Early childcare duration and students’ later outcomes in Europe By Daniela Del Boca; Chiara Monfardini; Sarah Grace See
  2. Exposure to past Immigration Waves and Attitudes toward Newcomers By Gihleb, Rania; Giuntella, Osea; Stella, Luca
  3. Advances in the Economic Theory of Cultural Transmission By Alberto Bisin; Thierry Verdier
  4. Is Social Protection a Luxury Good? By Michael Lokshin; Martin Ravallion; Iván Torre

  1. By: Daniela Del Boca; Chiara Monfardini; Sarah Grace See
    Abstract: The importance of investment in early childhood education (ECE) has been widely documented in the literature. Among the benefits, particularly for children from disadvantaged backgrounds, is its potential to mitigate educational inequality. However, some evidence also suggests that the positive effects of ECE on later outcomes tend to dissipate over time, leaving children who attended such programmes no better off academically than those who did not. This paper studies the relationship between students’ years spent in ECE and the results of their educational assessment outcomes at age 15. Using PISA survey data for fourteen European countries from 2015 and 2018, we conduct a cross-country comparison of student performance in reading, mathematics, and science, correlating the results to early childcare and pre-primary school attendance. Our findings show that participation in early childcare is associated with better assessments at age 15, but that the benefit is nonlinear and peaks at 3-4 years of childcare attendance. Examination of gender heterogeneity patterns reveals differences in girls’ and boys’ performance on the assessments; however, there are no gender differences in the relationship between childcare participation and test outcomes. We also explore differences related to the type of educational system attended and find distinct results for the unitary and separate settings.
    Keywords: early childhood education, pre-primary, early investments, human capital, assessments, gender, institution, unitary, separate, PISA
    Date: 2022
  2. By: Gihleb, Rania (University of Pittsburgh); Giuntella, Osea (University of Pittsburgh); Stella, Luca (Free University of Berlin)
    Abstract: How does previous exposure to massive immigrant inflows affect concerns about current immigration and the integration of refugees? To answer this question, we investigate attitudes toward newcomers among natives and previous immigrants. In areas that in the 1990s received higher inflows of immigrants of German origin—so-called ethnic Germans—native Germans are more likely to believe that refugees are a resource for the economy and the culture, viewing them as an opportunity rather than a risk. Refugees living in these areas report better health and feel less exposed to xenophobia.
    Keywords: immigration, refugees, birthplace diversity, public opinion
    JEL: A13 D64 J6 I31
    Date: 2022–09
  3. By: Alberto Bisin; Thierry Verdier
    Abstract: In this paper we survey recent advances in the economic theory of cultural transmission. We highlight three main themes on which the literature has made great progress in the last ten years: the domain of traits subject to cultural transmission, the micro-foundations for the technology of transmission, and feedback effects between culture, institutions, and various socio-economic environments. We conclude suggesting interesting areas for future research.
    JEL: O10 P16 P48
    Date: 2022–09
  4. By: Michael Lokshin; Martin Ravallion; Iván Torre
    Abstract: The claim that social protection is a luxury good—with a national income elasticity exceeding unity—has as been influential. The paper tests the “luxury good hypothesis” using newly-assembled data on social protection spending across countries since 1995, treating the pandemic period separately, as it entailed a large expansion in social protection efforts. While the mean income share devoted to social protection rises with income, this is attributable to multiple confounders, including relative prices, weak governance in low-income countries and access to information-communication technologies. Controlling for these, social protection is not a luxury good. This was also true during the pandemic.
    JEL: H53 I38 O15
    Date: 2022–09

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