Can sport really help to meet the Millennium Development Goals? Evidence from children in Peru

In contrast to the popular policy claim that sport might serve as vehicle to meet the Millennium Development Goals, empirical evidence based on large-scale survey data is largely missing. We use panel data based on a cohort of children and employ propensity score matching to identify the effects of sports participation on child development in Peru. Our findings suggest that participation in a sports group has positive impacts on subjective health and a measure of social capital. However, and in contrast to developed countries, we find no statistically significant effects on well-being and human capital formation.