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The socioeconomic gradient in child health and noncognitive skills: Evidence from the Czech Republic

Liyousew Borga (), Daniel Münich () and Lubomir Kukla

Economics & Human Biology, 2021, vol. 43, issue C

Abstract: We investigate the presence of a socioeconomic status (SES) gradient in children’s health and noncognitive skill development, and its evolution with child age using cohort data from the Czech Republic. We show that family SES are positively associated with better child health. These effects start to emerge at age 3 and are persistent for all subsequent ages. We find a modest strengthening of the gradient as the children grow older. Similarly, at the lowest distribution of average family income, children lag in their noncognitive skills. We find evidence that children enter school with substantial differences in noncognitive skill endowments based on family SES. This correlation persists when controlling for poor health at birth, the roles of specific and chronic health problems, housing conditions, and partner characteristics. Maternal health status explains some of the association between family income and child noncognitive skills. We account for the endogeniety of SES and non-linearities in measures.

Keywords: Socioeconomic status; Child health; Noncognitive skills; Education; Income gradient (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: I1 I13 I24 J13 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2021
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DOI: 10.1016/j.ehb.2021.101075

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