The impact of paid maternity leave: evidence from temporary disability insurance in Rhode Island

Project Summary:

This research explores how maternity leave affects mothers and their children. Much of the work on paid maternity leave in the United States has focused on the labor supply effect for women, with a small literature on health effects for children. Using a set of linked administrative data from the state of Rhode Island, this project will examine a more extensive set of outcomes for both mothers and children. In addition, the research will look at maternal and child outcomes for individuals across the income distribution, providing needed nuance to assess various policy options.


Justine Hastings is a professor of economics at Brown University and a research associate with the National Bureau of Economic Research, with program affiliations in Public Economics, Education Economics, Aging, Industrial Organization, and Environmental and Energy Economics, and she is an active participant in the Household Finance Working Group. She holds a PhD in Economics from the University of California, Berkeley. She is a co-editor of the Journal of Public Economics, and has served as a managing editor for the International Journal of Industrial Organization. She serves on the Academic Research Council for the United States Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and on the Council of Economic Advisors to the Governor of Rhode Island. She has served as an expert economist for state and federal agencies in matters related to antitrust, energy and environmental regulation.