Childcare for family welfare: Experimental evidence from Ugand


Speaker:Lore Vandewalle, The Graduate Institute
Date: Friday 19 November 2021
Time: 14:00
Location: online

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Abstract: We report findings from a field experiment in Uganda where women with children aged 3-5 were randomly offered either (i) a childcare subsidy, (ii) a cash grant equivalent in value to the childcare subsidy (iii) both the childcare subsidy and the cash grant. A fourth group of households remain as the control group. After a year, we find that access to childcare has improved child development substantially and increased household income by more than 30 percent. Strikingly, the impact of the childcare subsidy on household income is as large as that generated by the cash transfer. In terms of mechanisms, our data suggest that childcare primarily addresses a time constraint, allowing women to work more effectively and their partners to work more hours, while the cash treatment eases a capital constraint, stimulating investment and women’s labor supply in self-employment. We do not find evidence of strong complementarities between the childcare subsidy and the cash transfer.