This paper investigates the relationship between youth participation in household decision making and test performance in three countries India, Peru, and Vietnam. Using Young Lives Surveys data, the study constructs autonomy indices using factor analysis and regresses test performance on each of these indices. Contrary to the hypothesis that autonomy may be less beneficial in collectivistic cultures, this study does not find a negative relationship between autonomy and test performance among 19-year-olds in all three countries. Youth unilateral decision making in Peru and joint decision making in Vietnam are associated with higher test performance. Parental unilateral decision making is associated with lower performance in both countries. Autonomy is not significantly related to performance in India. Robustness check suggests that participation in household decisions (buying household utilities, buying livestock, land and house) may be less important for the youths than participation in decisions directly relevant to them.
adolescent autonomy household decision making parent-child relationship test performance