Flávio Cunha

Assistant Professor of Economics

University of Pennsylvania


Maternal Knowledge of Infant Development Survey (MKIDS)

Philadelphia Human Development Study (PHD Study)


A Framework for the Analysis of Credit Market Policies in Developing Economies, (with Aloisio Araujo, Bruno Funchal, and Rafael Ferreira).

The Impact of Social Security Reform on Occupational and Retirement Behavior: A Quantitative Assessment for Brazil, (with Marcelo Dos Santos and Pedro C. Ferreira).

Investments in the Human Capital of Children in Village Economies, (with Robert Townsend and Fan Wang).

Maternal Preferences and Investments in the Human Capital of Children.

Parental Learning About the Technology of Skill Formation, (with Anton Badev).


The Evolution of Inequality, Heterogeneity, and Uncertainty in Labor Earnings in the U.S. Economy, (with James J. Heckman).

The Production of Human Capital: Endowments, Investment, and Fertility, (with Anna Aizer).

Eliciting Maternal Expectations about the Technology of Skill Formation, (with Irma Elo and Jennifer Culhane) 


Returns to Skills and the College Premium, Journal of Money, Credit, and Banking, Vol. 43(IS1), pp. 39-86, August/2011, (with Fatih Karahan and Ilton Soares).

Recent Developments in the Estimation of Production Functions of Skills, Fiscal Studies, Vol. 32(2), pp. 297-316, June/2011.

Estimating the Technology of Cognitive and Non-Cognitive Skill Formation, Econometrica, Vol. 78(3), pp. 883-931, May/2010, (with James J. Heckman and Susanne M. Schennach).

Investing in Our Young People, in A. J. Reynolds, A. Rolnick, M. M. Englund, & J. Temple, eds., Cost-effective Early Childhood Programs in the First Decade: A Human Capital Integration, Chapter 18, pp. 381-414, 2010, New York: Cambridge University Press (with James Heckman).

Human Capital Formation in Childhood and Adolescence, CESifo Journal for Institutional Comparisons, Vol. 7(4), pp. 22-28, Winter/2009, (with James J. Heckman).

Crossing the Finish Line: A Review Article, Journal of Human Capital, Vol. 3(4), pp. 354-378, Winter/2009.

Early Education and its Importance in Reducing Violence, in F. Giambiagi, R. Henriques, S. Pessoa, and F. Velloso, eds., Educação Básica no Brasil: Construindo um Futuro Melhor,Chapter 5, pp. 95-116, 2009, Rio de Janeiro: Elsevier (with Aloisio P. de Araújo, James J. Heckman and Rodrigo L. de Moura).

The Economics and Psychology of Inequality and Human Development, Journal of the European Economic Association, Vol. 7(2-3), pp. 1-48, Apr-May/2009, (with James J. Heckman).

Formulating, Identifying, and Estimating the Technology for the Formation of Skills,Journal of Human Resources, Vol. 43(4), pp. 738-782, Fall/2008, (with James J. Heckman).

A New Framework for the Analysis of Inequality, Macroeconomic Dynamics, Vol. 12(S2), pp. 315-354, September/2008 (with James J. Heckman).

Identifying and Estimating the Distribution of Ex Ante and Ex Post Returns to Schooling: A Survey of Recent Developments, Labour Economics, Vol. 14(6), pp. 870-893, December/2007, (with James J. Heckman).

The Identification and Economic Content of Ordered Choice Models with Stochastic Cutoffs,International Economic Review, Vol. 48(4), pp. 1273-1309, November/2007, (with James J. Heckman and Salvador Navarro).

The Technology of Skill Formation, American Economic Review P&P, Vol. 97(2), pp. 31-47, May/2007, (with James J. Heckman).

Interpreting the Evidence on Life Cycle Skill Formation, in E.Hanushek and F.Welch, eds.,The Handbook of Economics of Education, Chapter 12, pp. 697-812, 2006, Amsterdam: North Holland, (with James J. Heckman, Lance Lochner and Dimitriy Masterov).

Counterfactual Analysis of Inequality and Social Mobility, in G. Fields, D. Grusky, and S. Morgan, eds., Frontiers of Research from Sociology and Economics, Chapter 4, pp. 290-346, 2006, Palo Alto: Stanford University Press, (with James J. Heckman and Salvador Navarro).

Separating Heterogeneity from Uncertainty in Life Cycle Earnings, Oxford Economic Papers, Vol. 57(2), pp. 191-261, April/2005, (with James J. Heckman and Salvador Navarro).