Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research - Research Publications

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    The Impact of Paid Parental Leave on Labor Supply and Employment Outcomes in Australia
    Broadway, B ; Kalb, G ; McVicar, D ; Martin, B (ROUTLEDGE JOURNALS, TAYLOR & FRANCIS LTD, 2020-03-19)
    The introduction of the Australian Paid Parental Leave scheme in 2011 provides a rare opportunity to estimate the impacts of publicly funded paid leave on mothers in the first year postpartum. The almost universal coverage of the scheme, coupled with detailed survey data collected specifically for the scheme’s evaluation, means that eligibility for paid leave under the scheme can be plausibly taken as exogenous, following a standard propensity score-matching exercise. Consistent with much of the existing literature, the study finds a positive impact on mothers’ taking leave in the first half year and on mothers’ probability of returning to work in the first year. The paper provides new evidence of a positive impact on continuing in the same job under the same conditions, where previous conclusions have been mixed. Further, it shows that disadvantaged mothers – low income, less educated, without access to employer-funded leave – respond most.
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    Nurses' labour supply elasticities: The importance of accounting for extensive margins
    Hanel, B ; Kalb, G ; Scott, A (ELSEVIER SCIENCE BV, 2014-01-01)
    We estimate a multi-sector model of nursing qualification holders' labour supply in different occupations. A structural approach allows us to model the labour force participation decision, the occupational and shift-type choice, and the decision about hours worked as a joint outcome following from maximising a utility function. Disutility from work is allowed to vary by occupation and also by shift type in the utility function. Our results suggest that average wage elasticities might be higher than previous research has found. This is mainly due to the effect of wages on the decision to enter or exit the profession, which was not included in the previous literature, rather than from its effect on increased working hours for those who already work in the profession.
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    Do Financial Incentives Influence GPs' Decisions to Do After-hours Work? A Discrete Choice Labour Supply Model
    Broadway, B ; Kalb, G ; Li, J ; Scott, A (WILEY, 2017-12-01)
    This paper analyses doctors' supply of after-hours care (AHC), and how it is affected by personal and family circumstances as well as the earnings structure. We use detailed survey data from a large sample of Australian General Practitioners (GPs) to estimate a structural, discrete choice model of labour supply and AHC. This allows us to jointly model GPs' decisions on the number of daytime-weekday working hours and the probability of providing AHC. We simulate GPs' labour supply responses to an increase in hourly earnings, both in a daytime-weekday setting and for AHC. GPs increase their daytime-weekday working hours if their hourly earnings in this setting increase, but only to a very small extent. GPs are somewhat more likely to provide AHC if their hourly earnings in that setting increase, but again, the effect is very small and only evident in some subgroups. Moreover, higher earnings in weekday-daytime practice reduce the probability of providing AHC, particularly for men. Increasing GPs' earnings appears to be at best relatively ineffective in encouraging increased provision of AHC and may even prove harmful if incentives are not well targeted.
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    Paid Parental Leave and Child Health in Australia
    BROADWAY, B ; Kalb, G ; Kuehnle, D ; Maeder, M (Wiley, 2017)
    Providing mothers with access to paid parental leave may be an important public policy to improve child and maternal health. Using extensive informatioan from the Longitudinal Study of Australian Children, we estimate how paid parental leave entitlements influence children's health up to age 7. Exploiting detailed information on children's health, family background, mothers’ pre-birth work histories and mothers’ health behaviours during pregnancy, we show that paid parental leave entitlements go together with a reduced probability of a child having multiple ongoing health conditions, but show no significant correlation with any single condition. We find that the reduction in multiple conditions is strongest for children from lower socioeconomic backgrounds. Our study implies that the provision of paid parental leave for short periods is unlikely to substantially improve child health on average, but may potentially benefit the health of more disadvantaged children.