Conditional Cash Transfers - An analysis of the OPORTUNIDADES program's effect on nutrition, health and schooling.

University essay from Handelshögskolan i Stockholm/Institutionen för nationalekonomi

Abstract: This paper seeks to describe the intergenerational poverty-pattern and the impacts of a Conditional Cash Transfer (CCT-) program on human capital. It seeks to analyse the effects of the Oportunidades-program on health, nutrition and school attendance in Mexican rural areas. Within recent years CCT-programs have grown popular, being one of the most accepted remedies for poverty alleviation in many countries. Oportunidades is designed with a careful selection process of large treatment and control groups, which makes it ideal for economic analysis. This paper analyses the relationship between receiving the program and the health and school enrolment of Mexican children in extreme poverty. It also seeks to describe a relationship between receiving the contribution and the average daily school attendance in hours, including the factors "distance to school" and "previous enrolment". The analysis shows a positive impact on health, nutrition and enrolment, and a positive relationship between all three factors on school attendance. Thus, a positive outcome of the program can be concluded. Additionally, the analysis supports previous research on CCTs and Oportunidades-evaluations, stating that economic incentives in fact can increase the creation of human capital.

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