This paper leverages quasi-experimental variation in increased access to basic formal education, introduced by a large-scale school construction program in Indonesia in the 1970s, to quantify the benefits to the children of women targeted by the program. Novel and rich data allow the analysis of a range of health, cognitive and socio-emotional development outcomes for children ages 6 to 8 in 2013. The paper finds that increased maternal access to schooling has positive and multidimensional effects on children. The effects are particularly salient at the bottom of the distributions of outcomes. Drawing on insights from economics, psychology, and sociology, the paper examines pathways for these impacts. Evidence suggests that mothers who were exposed to more schooling opportunities during childhood demonstrate less hostility toward their children when parenting and also invest more in their children’s preschool education.
“Hasan, Amer; Nakajima, Nozomi; Rangel, Marcos A.. 2020. Mama Knows (and Does) Best : Maternal Schooling Opportunities and Child Development in Indonesia. Policy Research Working Paper;No. 9355. World Bank, Washington, DC. © World Bank. https://openknowledge.worldbank.org/handle/10986/34352 License: CC BY 3.0 IGO.”