nep-neu New Economics Papers
on Neuroeconomics
Issue of 2020‒05‒18
four papers chosen by

  1. Early-Life Circumstances and Adult Locus of Control: Evidence from 46 Developing Countries By Shoji, Masahiro
  2. Children’s socio-emotional skills: Is there a quantity–quality trade-off? By Simon Briole; Héléne Le Forner; Anthony Lepinteur
  3. Overeducation and wages: the role of cognitive skills and personality traits By Marta Palczyñska
  4. "Class Size, Cognitive Abilities, Bullying, and Violent Behavior: Evidence from West Bank Schools" By Sameh Hallaq

  1. By: Shoji, Masahiro
    Abstract: Early-life circumstances have a long-term impact on adult outcomes such as health, wealth, and happiness. Using exogenous variation in weather conditions across 46 developing countries over time, this study examines the impact of experiencing weather shocks in childhood on adult non-cognitive skills, namely, locus of control. The results show that those who experienced rainfall shortage before age five are more likely to believe that they cannot control their life outcomes. However, the impact diminishes by their early forties. This study also demonstrates the negative impact of weather shocks on voting behavior. Finally, underlying mechanisms for this relationship are explored.
    Keywords: locus of control; non-cognitive skills; early life circumstances; climate change
    JEL: I25 J24 O15
    Date: 2020–05–01
  2. By: Simon Briole (PSE - Paris School of Economics); Héléne Le Forner (AMSE - Aix-Marseille Sciences Economiques - EHESS - École des hautes études en sciences sociales - AMU - Aix Marseille Université - ECM - École Centrale de Marseille - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique); Anthony Lepinteur (University of Luxembourg [Luxembourg])
    Abstract: Although it is widely acknowledged that non-cognitive skills matter for adult outcomes, little is known about the role played by family environment in the formation of these skills. We use a longitudinal survey of children born in the UK in 2000–2001, the Millennium Cohort Study by the Centre for Longitudinal Studies, to estimate the effect of family size on socio-emotional skills, measured by the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire. To account for the endogeneity of fertility decisions, we use a well-known instrumental approach that exploits parents' preference for children's gender diversity. We show that the birth of a third child negatively affects the socio-emotional skills of the first two children in a persistent manner. However, we show that this negative effect is entirely driven by girls. We provide evidence that this gender effect is partly driven by an unequal response of parents' time investment in favour of boys and, to a lesser extent, by an unequal demand for household chores.
    Keywords: Non-cognitive skills,Family size,Birth order,Child development
    Date: 2020
  3. By: Marta Palczyñska
    Abstract: This article investigates the role of personality traits and cognitive skills as potential determinants of overeducation and in explaining overeducation wage penalty. Using a representative survey of the Polish working-age population, with well-established measures of cognitive skills and personality traits, I find that accounting for personality and cognitive skills does not change the size and the statistical significance of overeducation wage penalty estimates. My results also demonstrate that personality is one of the contributors to the risk of being overeducated among workers aged 18 to 29 but not among people aged 30 to 68. Among younger workers agreeable individuals are more likely to be overeducated while conscientious ones are less likely. Moreover, lower cognitive skills are associated with the probability of being overeducated.
    Keywords: overeducation, educational mismatch, wages, personality traits, cognitive skills, numeracy
    JEL: D91 I26 J24 J31
    Date: 2020–05
  4. By: Sameh Hallaq
    Abstract: This study uses rich administrative and survey data to investigate the effects of class size on students' cognitive tests as well as bullying and violent behavior. I use the maximum class size rule to create a regression discontinuity (RD) relation between cohort enrollment size and class size in the public and the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) school system in the West Bank. In addition, I provide evidence that there is no violation of the RD assumptions resulting from discontinuities in the relationship between enrollment and students' household background at cutoff points induced by a maximum class size rule. The main findings suggest that class size has no direct impact on students' cognitive skills except for those in grade six. However, class size reduction improves the quality of life for children by mitigating the bullying and violent behavior among pupils that may negatively affect their achievements. Finally, I point to peer relations and mental health problems as a potential mechanism through which class size affects children's self-reported bullying-victim instances and violent behavior.
    Keywords: Class Size; Cognitive Abilities; Bullying; West Bank
    JEL: I20 I12

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