Skip to main content Accessibility help

Environmental resource collection: implications for children's schooling in Tigray, northern Ethiopia

  • Bahre Gebru (a1) and Sosina Bezu (a2)


This paper examines the adverse effect of natural resources scarcity on children's schooling and the possible gender bias of resource collection work against girls' schooling. It uses cross-sectional data on 316 children aged 7–18 years collected from 120 rural households in Tigray, northern Ethiopia. The two-stage conditional maximum likelihood estimation technique is employed to take care of endogeneity between schooling and collection intensity decisions. The results revealed that a 50 per cent increase in collection intensity reduces the likelihood of child schooling by approximately 11 per cent. However, we find no evidence of gender bias against girls' schooling.



Hide All
Admassie, A. (2002), ‘Allocation of children's time endowment between schooling and work in rural Admassie, A. (2002), ‘Allocation of children's time endowment between schooling and work in rural Ethiopia’, ZEF Discussion Papers on Development Policy No. 44, Centre for Development Research, Bonn.
Admassie, A. and Bedi, A.S. (2003), ‘Attending school: two R's and child work in rural Ethiopia’, Working Paper Series No. 387, International Institute of Social Studies, The Hague.
Araya, H. and Edwards, S. (2006), The Tigray Experience: A Success Story in Sustainable Agriculture, Penang: Third World Network.
Becker, G.S. (1965), ‘A theory of allocation of time’, Economic Journal 75: 493517.
Cameron, A.-C. and Trivedi, P.-K. (2009), Micro Econometrics Using Stata, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Chaudhury, N., Christiaensen, L., and Asadullah, M.N. (2006), ‘Schools, household risks and gender: determinants of child schooling in Ethiopia’, Working Paper Series No. 6, CSAE, World Bank, ESRC on SKOPE, Oxford University.
Cooke, P.-A. (2000), ‘Changes in intra household labor allocation to environmental goods collection: a case study from rural Nepal, 1982 and 1997’, Food Consumption and Nutrition Division Discussion Paper No. 87, International Food Policy Research Institute, Washington, DC.
Edwards, S., Gebreegziabher, T., and Araya, H. (2010), Success and Challenges in Ecological Agriculture: Experiences from Tigray, Ethiopia, Rome: Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations.
Gage, A. (2005), ‘The interrelationship between fosterage, schooling, and children's labor force participation in Ghana’, Population Research and Policy Review 24: 431466.
Gebremedhin, B., Pender, J., and Tesfay, G. (2002), ‘Nature and determinants of collective woodlot management in Northern Ethiopia’, Socio-economic and Policy Research Working Paper No. 40, International Livestock Research Institute, Nairobi.
GebreMichael, Y. and Waters-Bayer, A. (2007), ‘Trees are our backbone: integrating environment and local development in Tigray region of Ethiopia’, IIED Issue Paper No. 145, Irish Aid, Department of Foreign Affairs, Dublin.
Greene, W.H. (1998), ‘Gender economic courses in liberal arts colleges: further results’, Journal of Economic Education 29: 291300.
Gronau, R. (1977), ‘Leisure, home production and work: the theory of the allocation of time revisited’, Journal of Political Economy 85: 10991123.
Haile, G. and Haile, B. (n.d.), ‘Child labor and schooling in rural Ethiopia: nature and trade-off’, Unpublished manuscript, Policy Studies Institute and Department of Economics, Columbia University.
Heltberg, R., Arndt, T.C., and Sekhar, N.U. (2000), ‘Fuel wood consumption and forest degradation: a household model for domestic energy substitution in rural India’, Journal of Land Economics 76: 213232.
ILO (1999), The Worst Forms of Child Labour Convention, No. 182, International Labour Organization, Geneva.
Jensen, P. and Nielsen, H.S. (1997), ‘Child labor or school attendance? Evidence from Zambia’, Journal of Population Economics 10: 407424.
Mekonnen, A. and Köhlin, G. (2008), ‘Biomass fuel consumption and dung use as manure: evidence from rural households in the Amhara region of Ethiopia’, EfD Discussion Paper Series 08-18, Environment for Development, Washington, DC.
Ministry of Education (2009/2010), ‘Education statistics annual abstract’, Unpublished manuscript, Education Management Information System, Addis Ababa.
Nankhuni, F.J. and Findeis, J.L. (2004), ‘Natural resource collection work and children's schooling in Malawi’, Agricultural Economics 31: 123134.
Ndiritu, S.W. and Nyangena, W. (2010), ‘Environmental goods collection and children's schooling: evidence from Kenya’, EfD Discussion Paper Series 10-18, Environment for Development, Washington, DC.
Nielsen, H.S. and Dubey, A. (2002), ‘Child labor in rural India: a micro-economic perspective’, Indian Journal of Labor Economics 45: 480496.
Nkamleu, G.B. (2009), ‘Determinants of child labor and schooling in the native cocoa households of Côte d'Ivoire’, AERC Research Paper No. 190, African Economic Research Consortium, Nairobi.
Nyssen, J., Haile, M., Moeyersons, J., Poesen, J., and Deckers, J. (2004), ‘Environmental policy in Ethiopia: a rejoinder to Keeley and Scoones’, Journal of Modern African Studies 42: 137147.
Okpukpara, B.C. and Odurukwe, N. (2006), ‘Incidents and determinants of child labor in Nigeria: implications for poverty alleviation’, AERC Paper No. 156, African Economic Research Consortium, Nairobi.
Psacharopoulos, G. (1997), ‘Child labor versus educational attainment: some evidence from Latin America’, Journal of Population Economics 10: 377386.
Rivers, D. and Vuong, Q.H. (1988), ‘Limited information estimators and exogeneity tests for simultaneous probit models’, Journal of Econometrics 39: 347366.
Rosenzweig, M.R. and Evenson, R. (1977), ‘Fertility, schooling and the economic contribution of children in rural India: an econometric analysis’, Journal of the Econometric Society 45: 10651079.
Sackey, H.A. (2007), ‘The determinants of school attendance and attainment in Ghana: a gender perspective’, AERC Research Paper No. 173, African Economic Research Consortium, Nairobi.
Tigray Region Agriculture and Rural Development Bureau (2010/2011), ‘Natural resources utilization and development department report’, Tigray Region Agriculture and Rural Development Bureau, Mekelle, Ethiopia.
Tigray Region Education Bureau (2009/2010), ‘Educational statistics annual abstract, planning and resource mobilization department report’, Tigray Region Education Bureau, Mekelle, Ethiopia.
Tigray Region Water Resources Bureau (2010/2011), ‘Support process development planning department report’, Tigray Region Water Resources Bureau, Mekelle, Ethiopia.
Verbeek, M. (2004), A Guide to Modern Econometrics (2nd edn), Chichester: John Wiley & Sons.
Weir, S. (2010), ‘Parental attitudes and demand for schooling in Ethiopia’, Journal of African Economies 20: 90110.
Winkler-Dworak, M. (2003), ‘Food security, fertility differentials and land degradation in Sub-Saharan Africa: a dynamic framework’, Vienna Institute of Demography Working Paper No. 1, Vienna Institute of Demography, Vienna.
Woldehanna, T., Jones, N., and Bekele, T. (2008), The Invisibility of Children's Paid and Unpaid Work: Implications for Ethiopia's National Poverty Reduction Policy, Los Angeles, London, New Delhi and Singapore: SAGE Publications.
Wooldridge, J.M. (2002), Econometric Analysis of Cross-Section and Panel Data, Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.
Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

Environment and Development Economics
  • ISSN: 1355-770X
  • EISSN: 1469-4395
  • URL: /core/journals/environment-and-development-economics
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *


Altmetric attention score

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between <date>. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Usage data cannot currently be displayed