Education, Gender and Media : Empirical Essays in Development Economics
Sammanfattning: The first essay, Edutainment Radio, Women’s Status and Primary School Participation: Evidence from Cambodia, investigates whether exposure to education-entertainment radio leads to improved women's status and primary school participation. Results show significant behavioral effects related to women's decision-making power and investments in children's primary schooling in exposed areas. Suggestive evidence indicates that gender-related attitudes were affected as well, which is a stepping stone towards changing socially constructed gender norms. The second essay, Who Benefits from Free Education? Long-Term Evidence from a Policy Experiment in Cambodia, investigates the effects of abolishing primary school fees. One additional year of free education had no impact on poor children, but increased the educational attainment for non-poor children. Persistent local educational norms and income segregation may explain why poor students were less likely to progress and complete the higher grades. The third essay, Does Female Education Postpone Fertility? Evidence from a Policy Experiment in Cambodia, investigates the role of female education as a vehicle to postpone early childbearing. Exploiting a policy experiment with differential impact on education, the findings suggest that women who gained more education were associated with fewer births and a postponement of early fertility while no changes in early fertility were observed for unaffected women. The fourth essay, The Impact of a Food for Education Program on Schooling in Cambodia, evaluates three types of FFE interventions gradually implemented in primary schools. Results show that enrollment increased sharply in the short-run but did not lead to higher educational achievements, plausible due to a countervailing class size effect. While these interventions are cost-effective to attract children to school, adjusting school resources accordingly may be important to promote a long-term learning as well.
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