DP8523 Sports and Child Development

Author(s): Christina Felfe, Michael Lechner, Andreas Steinmayr
Publication Date: August 2011
Keyword(s): non-cognitive skills, physical activity, semi-parametric estimation, Skill formation
JEL(s): J12, J13, J24
Programme Areas: Labour Economics
Link to this Page: www.cepr.org/active/publications/discussion_papers/dp.php?dpno=8523

Despite the relevance of cognitive and non-cognitive skills for professional success, their formation is not yet fully understood. This study fills part of this gap by analyzing the role of sports club participation, one of the most popular extra-curricular activities, on children’s skill development. Our results indicate positive effects: school performance improves by 0.20 standard deviations and overall non-cognitive skills by 0.09 standard deviations. The results are robust when using alternative datasets as well as alternative estimation and identification strategies. The effects can be partially explained by increased physical activities replacing passive leisure activities.