Parental and Child Time Investments and the Cognitive Development of Adolescents

Daniela Del Boca, Chiara Monfardini, Cheti Nicoletti

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


While a large literature has focused on the impact of parental investments on child cognitive development, very little is known about the role of the child’s own investments alongside that of the parents. By using the Child Development Supplement of the Panel Study of Income Dynamics, we model the cognitive production function for adolescents using an augmented value-added model and adopt an estimation method that takes account of unobserved child characteristics. We find that a child’s own investments made during adolescence matter more than the mother’s. Our empirical results appear to be robust to several sensitivity checks.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)565-608
Number of pages44
JournalJournal of Labor Economics
Issue number2
Early online date30 Jan 2017
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2017

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© 2017, The University of Chicago Press. This is an author-produced version of the published paper. Uploaded in accordance with the publisher’s self-archiving policy. Further copying may not be permitted; contact the publisher for details.


  • time-use diaries
  • cognitive ability
  • child development
  • adolescence

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