Malnutrition will affect the base of the human capital including physical, mental and cognitive development negatively. Many children in developing countries have suffered from malnutrition because of insufficient access to foods and shortage of the nutrition knowledge. In order to solve the issues surrounding poor children and mothers, governments in developing countries and international organizations such as World Bank have launched the Conditional Cash Transfers (CCT) as one of the social protection policies. CCTs offer grants to mothers in poor families on the condition that they satisfy requirements related to childhood development such as attendance of periodic check-ups, vaccinations, and more than 85% of school attendance. In Latin American countries, it was empirically proved that CCTs have benefited on improvement of nutrition condition and cognitive and physical skills among children (World Bank, 2009). Particularly, the CCT recipients are shown to increase the share of food expenditure among the total expenditure (i.e., the Engel coefficient) relative to non-recipients. This is interesting because it is contrary to the standard prediction of economic theory, which demonstrates that the share of foods on the total consumption decreases if the income per capita increases (e.g. Attenasio et al. (2012), Angelucci & Attenasio (2013), Schady & Rosero (2008)). The literature attribute this surprising result to the fact that mothers are the recipients of the grant and that women possess different preferences and consumption patterns regarding foods relative to men (e.g. Doss (2006), Ward-Batts (2008)). That is, if women receive income and grants directly, and are in charge of determining the allocation of the resources, the Engel curve will shift upward, which is contrary to the common unitary-based Engel curve.
Owing to the effective results of the CCTs in Latin America, the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) started in 2008 in the Philippines. The 4Ps has been carefully designed for facilitating three-wave impact evaluation since the planning of the program. Chaudhury et al. (2013) implemented the impact evaluation of the 4Ps with the RCT method (IE2012). We exploit the data used in this IE2012, and estimate the Engel curve based on the collective model approach. Although we expect a positive impact of the treatment on the Engel curve, the result was the opposite, i.e., receiving 4Ps grants reduces the food share significantly. The results remain the same even if I control for the gender of the head of the household. On the other hand, I found that the treatment increases the ratio of medical consumption in total consumption. We presume this is due to the amount of health knowledge provided to mothers during the Family Development Session (FDS), which is offered as a part of the 4Ps. In the FDS, mothers learn about the growth of the childhood and child-rearing with the community members. Above all, the FDS has mainly provided the health information about the children. We assume that health consumption ratio increases because the parents can gain health knowledge more than nutrition knowledge in the FDS.
In response to these results, we examine the effects of provision of nutrition knowledge in the CCT program on the Engel coefficient and knowledge cultivation in CAR, the Philippines.