Human Capital is key for escaping poverty and attaining higher standards of living, said Professor Costas Meghir from Yale University at an “Inequality and…?” lecture at the EIB in June, organised by the EIB Institute and the University of Luxembourg as part of the “Inequality and…?” series.

Yet, he added, individuals in deprived communities often develop deficits from very early on, thus creating an intergenerational cycle of poverty and inequality.

Using examples from Jamaica, small towns in Colombia and urban slums in India, Professor Meghir showed that parent-based interventions (play groups or home visits by trained women from the local community) at early childhood have a positive impact on key outcomes among disadvantaged children such as cognition, language and social skills.

Such interventions mainly operate by encouraging parents to stimulate their children and invest more on them. Prof. Meghir’s research focuses on how these programs may be scaled up to attain long run sustainable impacts on human capital.

Click here for the presentation.