Marianne P. Bitler

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From the Cradle to the Labor Market? The Effect of Birth Weight on Adult Outcomes Lower birth weight babies have worse outcomes, both short-run in terms of one-year mortality rates and longer run in terms of educational attainment and earnings. However, recent research has called into question whether birth weight itself is important or whether it simply(More)
Labor supply theory predicts systematic heterogeneity in the impact of recent welfare reforms on earnings, transfers, and income. Yet most welfare reform research focuses on mean impacts. We investigate the importance of heterogeneity using random-assignment data from Connecticut’s Jobs First waiver, which features key elements of post-1996 welfare(More)
OBJECTIVE To determine whether important racial, ethnic, or socioeconomic status (SES) health disparities exist in infertility, impaired fecundity, or infertility treatment. DESIGN Four waves of the National Survey of Family Growth (NSFG) were pooled. Measures were compared across various race/ethnicity, education, and age groups. PARTICIPANT(S) Data(More)
Support for WIC, the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children, is based on the belief that "WIC works." This consensus has lately been questioned by researchers who point out that most WIC research fails to properly control for selection into the program. This paper evaluates the selection problem using rich data from the(More)
We develop a principal-agent model in an entrepreneurial setting and test the model’s predictions using unique data on entrepreneurial effort and wealth in privately held firms. Accounting for unobserved firm heterogeneity using instrumental-variables techniques, we find that entrepreneurial ownership shares increase with outside wealth and decrease with(More)
We analyze the relationship between prenatal WIC participation and birth outcomes in New York City from 1988-2001. The analysis is unique for several reasons. First, we have over 800,000 births to women on Medicaid, the largest sample ever used to analyze prenatal participation in WIC. Second, we focus on measures of fetal growth distinct from preterm(More)
This study provides the first comprehensive analysis of the distributional effects of Head Start, using the first national randomized experiment of the Head Start program (the Head Start Impact Study). We examine program effects on cognitive and noncognitive outcomes and explore the heterogeneous effects of the program through 1st grade by estimating(More)
Considerable policy and academic attention has been focused on the topic of food deserts. In this paper, we consider this topic from an economic perspective. First, we consider how the components of a standard economic analysis apply to the study of food deserts. Second, we discuss several implications of this economic analysis for measuring whether food(More)
The goal of the 1996 Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act was to end needy parents' dependence on governmental benefits, in part by promoting marriage. The prereform welfare system was widely believed to discourage marriage because it provided benefits primarily to single mothers. However, welfare reform may have actually(More)
A large literature has been concerned with the impacts of recent welfare reforms on income, earnings, transfers, and labor-force attachment. While one strand of this literature relies on observational studies conducted with large survey-sample data sets, a second makes use of data generated by experimental evaluations of changes to means-tested programs.(More)