Parental Education and Time Allocation of Child Care: Evidence from the Spanish Time-Use Survey

Alessandro Di Nallo, Universitat Pompeu Fabra

Parents invest material resources and time to raise children. Time investment is thought to be determinant to provide quality childcare and promote children’s development. This paper focuses on the time allocation of spouses using the recent Spanish Time Use Survey with two complementary approaches. First it highlights the cross sectional patterns in time spent with children by working and non-working parents. Second, it presents a stylized model of time allocation to illustrate the interplay of preferences and market productivities on parenting and work choices. The empirical model simultaneously specifies three time-use allocations – childcare, paid work and housework – for each spouse, allowing for correlation across the errors of the three equations. We find that education has a positive effect on childcare, especially for women, and time spent with children does not follows patterns typical of home production. We speculate that one possible reason for this positive education gradient refers to the investment aspect of caring time.

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 Presented in Session P4. Children and Youth/Population and Aging