The Effects of Parental Death and Chronic Poverty on Children’s Education and Health: Evidence from Indonesia

Daniel Suryadarma, Yus Medina Pakpahan, Asep Suryahadi
JEL codes: 
ISBN 978-979-3872-64-3

Using a sufficiently long-spanning longitudinal dataset, we estimate the short and long term effects of maternal and paternal death on childrens school enrollment, educational attainment, and health in Indonesia, then compare them to the effect of chronic poverty. We also investigate whether there are any gender dimensions in the effects. We find that young maternal orphans have worse educational outcomes than non-orphans, with the effect getting worse over time. However, we find no significant effect of orphanhood on health. However, chronically poor children have worse health and education outcomes. Among young children, the effect of maternal orphanhood on education is significantly more adverse than that of chronic poverty. Finally, chronically poor orphans do not suffer adverse effects beyond the effects of chronic poverty.