Dr. Bartik’s research examines the economic development benefits of universal, high-quality preschool education, and other early childhood programs, compared to traditional business incentives of the same cost. Dr. Bartik’s work argues that the main goal of economic development policy is to improve labor market outcomes for a given area, and so “economic development benefits” are defined as increased earnings per capita.
These economic development benefits are analyzed both from a state perspective and from a national perspective. In brief, Dr. Bartik’s research concludes that
universal preschool education would have sizable economic development benefits, both for a state that adopts universal preschool education and for the nation as a whole.
Similar findings are found for other early childhood programs, such as high-quality nurse visitation programs for first-time moms, and high-quality full-time child care and education programs.
For example, each $1 invested in universal preschool education is estimated to increase the:
present value of earnings in the state by almost $3
present value of earnings in the nation by almost $4
In the long-term, a national program of universal, high-quality preschool education would boost the size of the national economy by almost 2 percent. This increase represents:
over 3 million more jobs
almost $1 trillion in increased annual gross domestic product
Dr. Bartik’s research was funded in part by the Committee for Economic Development (CED) through a grant from the Pew Charitable Trusts’ Advancing Quality Pre-K for All initiative, and in part by the Pew Charitable Trusts. Dr. Bartik’s findings should not be interpreted as representing official views of Pew, CED, or the Upjohn Institute.
From Preschool to Prosperity: The Economic Payoff to Early Childhood Education, September 2014.
Effects of the Pre-K Program of Kalamazoo County Ready 4s on Kindergarten Entry Test Scores: Estimates Based on Data from the Fall of 2011 and the Fall of 2012
Upjohn Institute Working Paper No. 13-198, June 2013
Investing in Kids: Early Childhood Programs and Local Economic Development.
This book summarizes much of Dr. Bartik’s work on early childhood programs and local economic development, as well as extending this work to additional analysis of quality in early childhood programs, the timing and distribution of benefits, and how benefits vary in different types of local areas.
Earnings Benefits of Tulsa's Pre-K Program for Different Income Groups (with William Gormley and Shirley Adelstein)
Upjohn Institute Working Paper No. 09-151, July 2009
The published version of this paper appears in Economics of Education Review 31(6): 1143–1161 (December 2012).
Why Michigan (and Other States) Should Invest in Preschool
Read Dr. Bartik’s presentation and handout given to the Detroit Area Grantsmakers group, Council of Michigan Foundations, on January 11, 2011.
Estimated State and Local Fiscal Effects of the Nurse Family Partnership Program
Upjohn Institute Working Paper No. 09-152, 2009
Applies the model to fiscal analysis rather than labor market analysis.
Distributional Effects of Early Childhood Programs and Business Incentives and Their Implications for Policy
Upjohn Institute Working Paper No. 09-151, 2009
Draft of Chapter 8 of the Investing in Kids book.
How Policymakers Should Deal with the Delayed Benefits of Early Childhood Programs
Upjohn Institute Working Paper No. 09-150, 2009
Draft of Chapter 7 of the Investing in Kids book.
Economic Development Benefits of Preschool Expansion in Kalamazoo County
Upjohn Institute Working Paper No.09-147, July 2008.
Applies the model to a specific county.
The Economic Development Effects of Early Childhood Programs
Report to Pew that summarizes much of Dr. Bartik’s early work on early childhood programs. Estimates updated in Investing in Kids book.
First draft: November 15, 2007
Revised draft: January 25, 2008
Long-Term Economic Benefits of Investing in Early Childhood Programs: Proven Programs Boost Economic Development and Benefit the Nation’s Fiscal Health
Issue brief prepared by Pew that summarizes work by Dr. Bartik, along with other work by William Dickens and Charles Baschnagel, on the economic and fiscal effects of early childhood programs.
Taking Preschool Education Seriously as an Economic Development Program: Effects on Jobs and Earnings of State Residents Compared to Traditional Economic Development Programs.
Full Report (latest revision: March 30, 2006)
Original Version September 30, 2005 (revised March 13, 2006)
Provides all details of the estimates and how they are derived.
The Economic Development Benefits of Universal Preschool Education Compared to Traditional Economic Development Programs
PowerPoint Presentation, Capitol Hill, May 16, 2006
This Capitol Hill briefing was sponsored by the Pew Charitable Trusts and PNC Financial Services, and also included presentations by pollster John Zogby and economists Isabel Sawhill, William Dickens, and Jeffrey Tebbs of the Brookings Institution.
The Economic Development Benefits of Universal Preschool Education Compared to Traditional Economic Development Programs.
Shorter Summary, Report May 5, 2006
Summarizes the main estimates and methodologies used
The following organizations have sponsored or conducted considerable additional research related to the economic benefits of high-quality preschool: