The Long-term Effects of Conditional Cash Transfers on Child Labor and School Enrollment

Produced by: 
Getulio Vargas Foundation
Available from: 
August 2015
Paper author(s): 
Marcel Peruffo
Pedro Cavalcanti Ferreira
Education - Health
Financial Economics

This paper investigates the long-term effects of conditional cash transfers on school attainment and child labor. To this end, we construct a dynamic heterogeneous agent model, calibrate it with Brazilian data, and introduce a policy similar to the Brazilian Bolsa Famlia. Our results suggest that this type of policy has a very strong impact on educational outcomes, sharply increasing primary school completion. The conditional transfer is also able to reduce the share of working children from 22% to 17%. We then compute the transition to the new steady state and show that the program actually increases child labor over the short run, because the transfer is not enough to completely cover the schooling costs, so children have to work to be able to comply with the program's schooling eligibility requirement. We also evaluate the impacts on poverty,inequality, and welfare.


Research section: 
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