Children, Labour Supply and Childcare: Challenges for Empirical Analysis

Melbourne Institute Working Paper No. 15/07

Date: April 2007


Guyonne Kalb


The aim of this paper is to give an overview of the important issues relating to labour supply of the primary carer in a household. Childcare plays a central role in allowing the primary carer time away from young children in the household. Therefore, childcare use is a central topic of this paper as well. There are a number of different aspects to childcare, such as price, quality, availability and type of service. This paper discusses analytical problems and challenges, taking Australian data, policy and experience as a focus, but drawing on a wide range of international empirical studies. It reports results from previous research on childcare use and labour supply, and it outlines areas requiring more study. The focus of the paper is on economic research.

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