Understanding the Effects of Workfare Policies on Child Human Capital

Jorge Rodríguez*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Workfare can impact child development by inducing parents to spend less time at home. I study the mechanisms by which workfare policies affect children using the New Hope workfare experiment. The program randomly assigned individuals to a policy bundle including income and childcare subsidies conditional on full-time work. For families with young children, the program had positive effects on child academic performance and classroom behavior. Coun-terfactual experiments from a dynamic discrete choice model indicate that most of the effect of New Hope on young children is explained by parents enrolling their children in center-based childcare.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)39-75
Number of pages37
JournalJournal of Labor Economics
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2023

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
(USACH) for valuable comments. I also thank Antonia Aguilera for valuable research assistance. I gratefully acknowledge funding from Agencia Nacional de In-vestigación y Desarrollo through Fondecyt Iniciación grant 11190481. Contact the author at jp.rodriguez.osorio@gmail.com. Information concerning access to the data used in this paper is available as supplemental material online.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022.


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