Women’s market work and childcare policies in Colombia: policy simulations using a computable general equilibrium model

Martin Cicowiez, Hans Lofgren, Ana Tribin, Tatiana Mojica


In recent decades, Colombia has made significant progress towards achieving gender equality in its labor market. However, persistent inequalities in unpaid care work remain a significant challenge, resulting in heavy care workload for women. This study evaluates the impact of three government policy options that can help reduce women's unpaid work: subsidy for childcare services provided by the market, an increase in public provision of childcare services, and cash transfers to households with children using a care-extended computable general equilibrium model (CGE) calibrated to Colombian data. The results show that while all policies improve family economic situations by increasing private consumption, childcare provision, whether through subsidies or as a public good, has a more significant impact on increasing female market work while cash transfers increase unpaid work performed inside the home. These findings underscore the importance of policy design and their analysis regarding their impact on gender inequalities, labor supply, and economic growth. 

JEL classification: E6, J16


economic modeling, computable general equilibrium, social accounting matrix, feminist economics, care, unpaid care work, time use, Latin America, Colombia

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