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International Handbook on the Economics of Education

Edited by Geraint Johnes and Jill Johnes

This major Handbook comprehensively surveys the rapidly growing field of the economics of education. It is unique in that it comprises original contributions on an exceptional range of topics from a review of human capital, signalling and screening models, to consideration of issues such as educational externalities and economic growth, funding models, determinants of educational success, the educational production function, educational standards and efficiency measurement. Labour market issues such as the market for teachers and the transition of students from school to work are also explored.
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Chapter 17: Education, Child Labour and Development

Saqib Jafarey and Sajal Lahiri


Saqib Jafarey and Sajal Lahiri 1 Introduction The link between education and economic growth has been explored elsewhere in this volume.1 Economic growth is arguably the main ingredient of economic development, but it is by no means the only one. In the developing world, economic growth is accompanied by a whole host of social, political and institutional changes. In addition to being a vital engine of economic growth, education also plays a key role in these other aspects of the development process. One of the immediately obvious roles that education plays in a developing country is that, along with health care, nutrition, shelter and legal protection, it forms part of the nexus of factors that promote the welfare of children. Education is not only a form of investment towards gainful employment later on in life, it is also believed to help a child evolve into a responsible, rational and socially well adjusted adult. Because of this, the right to a decent education has come to be recognized by the international community as a basic human right of each child.2 Unfortunately, however, a large number of children are compelled to spend their formative years working to support themselves and their families rather than enrolling in full-time education. Work and study are not mutually exclusive activities, in that many children undertake both to some extent. They are also not collectively exhaustive since a third manner in which children might spend their time is leisure. Nonetheless the evidence suggests that engaging in child...

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