Scandinavian Working Papers in Economics

Working Paper Series,
IFAU - Institute for Evaluation of Labour Market and Education Policy

No 2010:5: Does providing childcare to unemployed affect unemployment duration?

Ulrika Vikman ()
Additional contact information
Ulrika Vikman: Department of Economics, Uppsala University, Postal: P O Box 513, SE-751 20 Uppsala, Sweden

Abstract: This paper examines if the probability of leaving unemployment changes for unemployed parents with young children when childcare is available. To investigate this, I use the heterogeneity among Swedish municipalities before the implementation of a 2001 Swedish childcare reform making it mandatory for municipalities to offer child¬care to unemployed parents for at least 15 hours per week. In the study difference-in-differences and difference-in-difference-in-differences methods are used. The results indicate a positive effect on the probability of leaving unemployment for mothers when childcare is available, but no effect is found for fathers. For mothers, some heterogeneous effects are also found, with a greater effect on the probability of leaving unemployment for work when childcare is available for mothers with only compulsory schooling or university education and mothers with two children.

Keywords: Unemployment duration; childcare

JEL-codes: J13; J64

35 pages, May 6, 2010

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