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Do financial incentives aimed at decreasing interhousehold inequality increase intrahousehold inequality?

Amanda Chuan (), John List () and Anya Samek

Journal of Public Economics, 2021, vol. 196, issue C

Abstract: Research has shown that giving disadvantaged families financial incentives to invest in their children could decrease socioeconomic inequality by enhancing human capital formation. Yet, within the household how are such gains achieved? We use a field experiment to investigate how parents allocate time when they receive financial incentives. We find that incentives increase investment in the target child. But, parents achieve these gains by substituting away from time spent with the child’s sibling(s). An unintended consequence is that intrahousehold inequality increases and aggregate gains from the program are overstated when focusing only on target children.

Keywords: Family economics; Intrahousehold allocation; Early childhood education (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: D13 I21 I24 I26 J13 J24 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2021
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Working Paper: Do Financial Incentives Aimed at Decreasing Interhousehold Inequality Increase Intrahousehold Inequality? (2021) Downloads
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Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:eee:pubeco:v:196:y:2021:i:c:s0047272721000189

DOI: 10.1016/j.jpubeco.2021.104382

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