Inequality in Childcare: The Case of Nannies

Research Findings Working Papers

Using web data to study the informal childcare sector in Canada

Working paper by Jose Morales Vidales and Monica Alexander presents methods and early findings from webscraping project.

Jose Morales Vidales and Monica Alexander have submitted an abstract for the Population Association of America based on the first findings from the “Inequality in Childcare: The Case of Nannies” project. If accepted, they will present this paper at the annual meeting in April, 2024. We attach it here as a working paper.

Project Lead

Students & Associates

  • Jose Morales Vidales

Demand for non-parental childcare has increased in recent decades, including in-formal home-based childcare offered by nannies. However, traditional data sources lack detailed information required to understand the experiences of nannies seeking work. In this project we utilize a popular website in Canada to study patterns and trends in the informal childcare sector in Canada. We scraped almost 10,000 unique online user profiles of individuals seeking work, and utilized keyword- and
embedding-based approaches to classify their demographic characteristics based on free-text data. Initial results show differences in experience and advertised salary based on migration status and country of origin.

Vidales and Alexander, Working Paper