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Child labour or school attendance? Evidence from Zambia


In this paper we investigate what affects school attendance and child labour in an LDC, using data for Zambia. Since the data comes from a household survey with information on all household members it allows us to take account of unobserved household effects by introducing household-specific effects in a logit model. The empirical analysis suggests that both economic and sociological variables are important determinants for the choice between school attendance and child labour. In particular, we find some support for the hypothesis that poverty forces households to keep their children away from school.

JEL classification: J24, I21, O15

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Received May 20, 1996/Accepted January 2, 1997

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Jensen, P., Nielsen, H. Child labour or school attendance? Evidence from Zambia. J Popul Econ 10, 407–424 (1997).

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  • Key words: Child labour
  • human capital
  • household-specific effects