The%20Inter%2DGenerational%20Transmission%20of%20Cognitive%20Abilities%20in%20Guatemala

Working Papers

The Inter-Generational Transmission of Cognitive Abilities in Guatemala


CODE: IDB-WP-247
AUTHOR(s): Calderón, Ma. Cecilia , Hoddinott, John
PUBLISHED: May 2011
LANGUAGE: English
RELATED TOPICS: Poverty Reduction and Labor
DOWNLOAD FILE IN: English

Abstract:

This paper examines early childhood development (ECD) outcomes and their association with family characteristics, investments, and environmental factors, with particular emphasis on the inter-generational transmission of cognitive abilities. The paper examines the causal relationship between parental cognitive abilities and ECD outcomes of their offspring using a rich data set from rural Guatemala that can account for such unobservable factors. A 10 percent increase in maternal Raven’s scores increase children’s Raven’s scores by 7.8 percent. A 10 percent increase in maternal reading and vocabulary skills increases children’s score on a standard vocabulary test by 5 percent. Effects are larger for older children, and the impact of maternal cognitive skills is larger than for paternal skills.

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