Document Type


Peer Reviewed


Publication Date


NLM Title Abbreviation

Forum Health Econ Policy

Journal/Book/Conference Title

Forum for Health Economics & Policy

DOI of Published Version



This paper assesses the effects of household investments through child educating activities on child neurodevelopment between the ages of 3 and 24 months, and evaluates whether investments explain racial and socioeconomic developmental gaps in South America. Quantile regression is used to evaluate the heterogeneity in investment effects by unobserved developmental endowments. The study finds large positive investment effects on early child neurodevelopment, with generally larger effects among children with low developmental endowments (children at the left margin of the development distribution). Investments explain part of the observed racial gaps and the whole socioeconomic developmental gap. Investments may compensate for low endowments and policy interventions to increase investments may reduce early development gaps and result in high social and economic returns.


child development; neurodevelopment; child health; health investment; quantile regression

Journal Article Version

Version of Record

Published Article/Book Citation

Forum for Health Economics & Policy, 14:2 (2011). DOI:DOI: 10.2202/1558-9544.1237.


Copyright 2011, De Gruyter. Posted by permission.