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Dynamic Complementarities in Human Capital Formation? Family and School Environments - Ofer Malamud

Date & Time:
April 24, 2015 | 3:00 pm - 4:30 pm
SS 423
Ofer Malamud, University of Chicago

Abstract:  There is growing interest in how conditions during early childhood influence the productivity of later human capital investments. We examine whether the educational benefits of going to a better school are larger for children who experienced better family environments because they were born after the liberalization of a restrictive abortion policy in Romania. We use an empirical strategy that combines a regression discontinuity (RD) design and a differences-in-differences (DD) framework to estimate impacts on a high stakes school-leaving exam. Although we find positive and significant effects of both going to a better school and being born under a less restrictive abortion regime, we do not find evidence of significant interactions between these two human capital shocks/investments.  This suggests that dynamic complementarities may not be particularly important in this context, and points to further research to determine under what circumstances dynamic complementarities are important.

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