Date of Award

1-1-2012

Document Type

Campus Access Thesis

Department

Moore School of Business

Sub-Department

Economics

First Advisor

Orgul D Ozturk

Abstract

Does increasing the length of birth related leave have long-term academic effects in children? The goal behind birth related leave polices is to improve child and family outcomes. Most studies have focused on the effects of birth related leave on some form of child health but not academic performance. Using the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) 2006 component scores as outcome variables, OLS regressions were performed on 15 to 16 year old students for 12 European countries to estimate the achievement effect of birth related leave. Other covariates included in the study are family characteristics, school characteristics, female labor characteristics, and social protection policies. As female labor force participation rates increase the negative effects of unpaid leave rise quickly relative to paid leave. Given trends of increasing female participation in the labor market, policy makers should be wary of introducing unpaid birth related leave expansions.

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