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Brazil's Bolsa Familia: Does it work for adolescents and do they work less for it?

Economics of Education Review Volume 46, Number 1, ISSN 0272-7757 Publisher: Elsevier Ltd


In 2008, Brazil's conditional cash transfer program Bolsa Familia expanded to cover poor adolescents’ school attendance up to age 17; prior the maximum age was 15. In the first year of implementation, I find an increase in attendance among the 16-year-olds of 6 percentage points, with urban boys responsible for most of this, raising their attendance rates by 16 percentage points. I find no change in attendance for the 17-year-olds who had a gap year in treatment: though they had previously had received Bolsa Familia until age 15, they were not eligible as 16-year-olds in 2007 and once again became eligible in 2008. My findings suggest this expansion of Bolsa Familia was sufficient to maintain youth in school who were already attending, but not powerful enough to reclaim drop-outs. Additionally, I find little evidence that Bolsa Familia impacts the adolescents’ time devoted to work and chores.


Reynolds, S.A. (2015). Brazil's Bolsa Familia: Does it work for adolescents and do they work less for it?. Economics of Education Review, 46(1), 23-38. Elsevier Ltd. Retrieved December 5, 2020 from .

This record was imported from Economics of Education Review on March 1, 2019. Economics of Education Review is a publication of Elsevier.

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