nep-neu New Economics Papers
on Neuroeconomics
Issue of 2023‒10‒16
two papers chosen by

  1. Trajectories of Early Childhood Skill Development and Maternal Mental Health By Sevim, Dilek; Baranov, Victoria; Bhalotra, Sonia; Maselko, Joanna; Biroli, Pietro
  2. Parenting with Patience: Parental Incentives and Child Development By Del Boca, Daniela; Flinn, Christopher; Verriest, Ewout; Wiswall, Matthew

  1. By: Sevim, Dilek (University of Basel); Baranov, Victoria (University of Melbourne); Bhalotra, Sonia (University of Warwick and CAGE); Maselko, Joanna (University of North Carolina); Biroli, Pietro (University of Bologna)
    Abstract: We investigate the impacts of a perinatal psychosocial intervention on trajectories of maternal mental health and child skills, from birth to age 3. We find improved maternal mental health and functioning (0.17 – 0.29 SD), modest but imprecisely estimated improvements in parental investments (0.07 to 0.11 SD), and transitory improvements in child socioemotional development (0.06 to 0.39 SD). We also find negligible influence of the intervention on physical health and cognitive development. Estimates of a skill production function reveal that the intervention is associated with reduced productivity of maternal mental health and narrowed “depression gaps†in mother and child outcomes.
    Keywords: mental health; stress; socioemotional; RCT; child development; technology of skill formation; gender JEL Classification:
    Date: 2023
  2. By: Del Boca, Daniela (University of Turin); Flinn, Christopher (New York University); Verriest, Ewout (New York University); Wiswall, Matthew (University of Wisconsin-Madison)
    Abstract: We construct a dynamic model of child development where forward-looking parents and children jointly take actions to increase the child's cognitive and non-cognitive skills within a Markov Perfect Equilibrium framework. In addition to time and money investments in their child, parents also choose whether to use explicit incentives to increase the child's self-investment, which may reduce the child's future intrinsic motivation to invest by reducing the child's discount factor. We use the estimated model parameters to show that the use of extrinsic motivation has large costs in terms of the child's future incentives to invest in themselves.
    Keywords: time allocation, child development, parenting styles
    JEL: J13 D1
    Date: 2023–09

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