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Household childcare choices and women’s work behavior in Russia


Lokshin, Michael M. (2004). Household childcare choices and women's work behavior in Russia. Journal of Human Resources, 39(4), 1094-1115.


The paper models household demand for childcare, mothers’ labor force participation and mothers’ working hours in Russia. The model estimates the effects of the price of childcare, mother’s wage, and household income on household behavior and well-being. Reduced-form models of the discrete and continuous household choices are estimated jointly using the Semi-Parametric Full Information Maximum Likelihood method. This method controls for the error term correlations across outcomes, and the correlation of the error terms that can result when panel data are used. The estimations indicate that mothers’ labor force participation and working hours are responsive to changes in the price of childcare and hourly wages. The simulations presented in this paper show that family allowance transfers--intended as a means of reducing poverty--do not have a significant effect on a household’s choice of childcare arrangements. Replacing family allowances with childcare subsidies may have a strong positive effect on women’s labor force participation and thus can be effective in reducing poverty.

Michael Lokshin is a senior researcher at the Development Research Group, World Bank, 1818 H Street NW, Washington, D.C. 20433. The author gratefully acknowledges the financial support of the World Bank’s Gender Board. He thanks Dr. David Blau (UNC-CH), Dr. Martin Ravallion (The World Bank), and two anonymous reviewers of the paper for valuable comments. These are the views of the author, and should not be attributed to the World Bank. The data used in this research may be obtained from Carolina Population Center at University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill at:


Reference Type

Journal Article

Year Published


Journal Title

Journal of Human Resources


Lokshin, Michael M.