Project Team: Kjetil Bjorvatn (FAIR) ; Vincent Somville (FAIR) ; Selim Gulesci (Bocconi University); Lore Vandewalle (Graduate Institute)
Key words: Women business development – child development – Uganda
Funding Organisation: Norwegian Research Council & Private Enterprise Development in Low-Income Countries (PEDL)
Project summary: Can supporting pre-school education improve (i) educational outcomes for the children and (ii) business development for the mothers? These are the two key research questions in our project. Other studies have found that child care has a positive impact on children's development and mother's employment decisions. No study, however, has explored these questions in Sub-Saharan Africa, and no study has used a randomized control methodology to do so. We propose a field experiment in collaboration with BRAC Uganda where we offer incentives to female entrepreneurs with small children to send their children to quality child care, and explore impact of this treatment on both the children's development and on the business development of the mother-entrepreneurs. In this way, our project is ground breaking both in the choice of geographical context and in the choice of method used to investigate these questions. Moreover, our project adds to the literature by exploring possible interaction effects between child care and business training for business development. Finally, it addresses potential spillover and general equilibrium effects of the intervention, which are usually ignored by business development and job creation programmes.