November 2012

IZA DP No. 7053: Can't Buy Mommy's Love? Universal Childcare and Children's Long-Term Cognitive Development

published in: Journal of Population Economics, 2015, 28(2), 393-422

What happens to children's long-run cognitive development when introducing universal high-quality childcare for 3-year olds mainly crowds out maternal care? To answer this question we exploit a natural experiment framework and employ a difference-in-difference approach. We find sizable improvements in children's reading and math skills at age 15, as well as in grade progression during primary and secondary school. Effects are driven by girls and disadvantaged children.