Article

Conditional Cash Transfer Programs: Effects on Growth, Health, and Development in Young Children

Lia C. H. Fernald, Paul J. Gertler and Melissa Hidrobo

in The Oxford Handbook of Poverty and Child Development

Published in print May 2012 | ISBN: 9780199769100
Published online September 2012 | | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/oxfordhb/9780199769100.013.0032

Series: Oxford Library of Psychology

 Conditional Cash Transfer Programs: Effects on Growth, Health, and Development in Young Children

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Conditional cash transfer (CCT) programs operate by giving cash payments to families only if they comply with a set of certain requirements relating to the health and education of family members. In this paper we discuss why and how CCTs could affect children's outcomes, and review evidence from CCT programs throughout the world that focus on the effects of CCT programs on birth outcomes, children's health and growth, and children's cognitive development. Finally, we examine the effects of CCT programs on factors that could indirectly affect child outcomes, such as growth monitoring and household food purchases. We discuss evidence from conditional cash transfer programs in Mexico, Brazil, Peru, Honduras, Nicaragua, Colombia, India, Nepal, and Jamaica, and unconditional cash transfer programs in South Africa, Malawi, and Ecuador.

Keywords: poverty alleviation; welfare; incentive-based; targeting; cognition; developing countries

Article.  16253 words. 

Subjects: Psychology ; Developmental Psychology

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