EconStor >
Forschungsinstitut zur Zukunft der Arbeit (IZA), Bonn >
IZA Discussion Papers, Forschungsinstitut zur Zukunft der Arbeit (IZA) >

Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item:

http://hdl.handle.net/10419/35965
  
Title:Estimating the technology of cognitive and noncognitive skill formation PDF Logo
Authors:Cunha, Flavio
Heckman, James Joseph
Schennach, Susanne
Issue Date:2010
Series/Report no.:IZA Discussion Papers 4702
Abstract:This paper formulates and estimates multistage production functions for children's cognitive and noncognitive skills. Skills are determined by parental environments and investments at different stages of childhood. We estimate the elasticity of substitution between investments in one period and stocks of skills in that period to assess the benefits of early investment in children compared to later remediation. We establish nonparametric identification of a general class of production technologies based on nonlinear factor models with endogenous inputs. A by-product of our approach is a framework for evaluating childhood and schooling interventions that does not rely on arbitrarily scaled test scores as outputs and recognizes the differential effects of the same bundle of skills in different tasks. Using the estimated technology, we determine optimal targeting of interventions to children with different parental and personal birth endowments. Substitutability decreases in later stages of the life cycle in the production of cognitive skills. It increases slightly in later stages of the life cycle in the production of noncognitive skills. This finding has important implications for the design of policies that target the disadvantaged. For some configurations of disadvantage and for some outcomes, it is optimal to invest relatively more in the later stages of childhood than in earlier stages.
Subjects:Cognitive skills
noncognitive skills
dynamic factor analysis
endogeneity of inputs
anchoring test scores
parental influence
JEL:C31
J13
Document Type:Working Paper
Appears in Collections:IZA Discussion Papers, Forschungsinstitut zur Zukunft der Arbeit (IZA)

Files in This Item:
File Description SizeFormat
619449659.pdf999.59 kBAdobe PDF
No. of Downloads: Counter Stats
Download bibliographical data as: BibTeX
Share on:http://hdl.handle.net/10419/35965

Items in EconStor are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated.