nep-afr New Economics Papers
on Africa
Issue of 2013‒06‒16
sixteen papers chosen by
Quentin Wodon
World Bank

  1. Are There Myths on Road Impact and Transport in Sub-Saharan Africa? By Monica Beuran; Marie Castaing Gachassin; Gaël Raballand
  2. Africa's Green Revolution? The determinants of the adoption of NERICAs in West Africa By Aliou Diagne; Steven Glover; Ben Groom; Jonathan Phillips
  3. Agriculture as a sector of opportunity for young people in Africa By Brooks, Karen; Zorya, Sergiy; Gautam, Amy; Goyal, Aparajita
  4. Life satisfaction and education in South Africa: Investigating the role of attainment and the likelihood of education as a positional good By Ferdi Botha
  5. Network proximity and business practices in African Manufacturing By Fafchamps, Marcel; Soderbom, Mans
  6. Analysing the Effects of Fiscal Policy Shocks in the South African Economy By Charl Jooste, Guangling (Dave) Liu and Ruthira Naraidoo
  7. Input subsidies and improved maize varieties in Malawi: -What can we learn from the impacts in a drought year? By Holden, Stein; Mangisoni, Julius
  8. Mapping, Cost, and Reach to the Poor of Faith-Inspired Health Care Providers in Sub-Saharan Africa: Strengthening the Evidence for Faith-inspired Health Engagement in Africa, Volume 3 By Oliver, Jill; Wodon, Quentin
  9. Weather variability and food consumption Evidence from rural Uganda By Lazzaroni, Sara
  10. Monetary Policy Response to Foreign Aid in an Estimated DSGE Model of Malawi By Chance Mwabutwa, Manoel Bittencourt and Nicola Viegi
  11. Does Promoting School Attendance Reduce Child Labour? Evidence from Burkina Faso’s Bright Project By Furio Camillo Rosati; Jacobus de Hoop
  12. Mixed Method Evaluation of a Passive mHealth Sexual Information Testing Service in Uganda By Julian Jamison; Dean Karlan; Pia Raffler
  13. Politiques macroéconomiques et stabilisation des chocs dans la zone UEMOA By Cheikh Tidiane Ndiaye; Mamadou Abdoulaye Konte
  14. Early Marriage, Women Empowerment and Child Mortality: Married Too Young To Be a «Good Mother»? By Nathalie Guilbert
  15. Transferts de fonds et résilience des pays d'Afrique de l'Ouest face à la variabilité des précipitations : une perspective macroéconomique By Rémi Generoso
  16. The coping strategies to fight against the food insecurity in the Republic of Niger By Andres, L.; Lebailly, Ph.

  1. By: Monica Beuran (World Bank - Washington District of Columbia (United States)); Marie Castaing Gachassin (CES - Centre d'économie de la Sorbonne - CNRS : UMR8174 - Université Paris I - Panthéon-Sorbonne); Gaël Raballand (World Bank - Washington District of Columbia (United States))
    Abstract: As planned large investments in road infrastructure continue to be high on the agenda of many African countries, only few of these countries have actually ammended their investments strategy. In many cases, there seems to be a preference for a status quo that can easily be explained by political economy factors driving the policies in the sector. This paper first presents data on the state of roads in Sub-Saharan Africa (length, density, condition) as well as on investments in the sector over the last decades. It then demonstrates how most countries' strategies are based on some misperceptions and recommends some changes to improve the developmental impact of roads investments. Better prioritization of investments, better procurement and contract management, better projects implementation and better monitoring are still needed, in spite of the efforts observed in the last 10 years.
    Keywords: Transport; roads; Sub-Saharan Africa; strategy; infrastructure; procurement
    Date: 2013–05
  2. By: Aliou Diagne (Africa Rice Centre, Cotonou, Benin); Steven Glover (Overseas Development Institute, London, UK); Ben Groom (Department of Gography and Environment, London School of Economics, London, UK); Jonathan Phillips (Department of Economics, SOAS, University of London, UK)
    Abstract: We analyse the rate and determinants of adoption of modern rice varieties (NERICAs) in Guinea, The Gambia and Cote d'Ivoire. The role of knowledge and information is evaluated using programme evaluation methods. Using household data collected by the Africa Rice Centre we show that the exposure and access to seeds lead to radically different levels of adoption by country: 30% in Cote D’Ivoire compared to around 90% for The Gambia and Guinea. Analysis of the determinants of adoption in each country reveals the heterogeneity in the role of agricultural and societal conditions and implies country/province specific policies are appropriate.
    Keywords: NERICA Varieties, Technology Adoption, West Africa, Food Security
    JEL: Q16 Q18
    Date: 2012–06
  3. By: Brooks, Karen; Zorya, Sergiy; Gautam, Amy; Goyal, Aparajita
    Abstract: This paper sheds light on how to harvest the"youth dividend"in Sub-Saharan Africa by creating jobs in agriculture. The agriculture that attracts the youth will have to be profitable, competitive, and dynamic. These are the same characteristics needed for agriculture to deliver growth, to improve food security, and to preserve a fragile natural environment. With higher priority accorded to implementation of well-designed public investments in agriculture, continued progress on regulatory and policy reform, and attention to assure inclusion of young people in Africa's agricultural renaissance, the sector's handsome youth dividend can be collected and widely shared.
    Keywords: Access to Finance,Banks&Banking Reform,Rural Development Knowledge&Information Systems,Environmental Economics&Policies,Adolescent Health
    Date: 2013–06–01
  4. By: Ferdi Botha
    Abstract: This paper explores various dynamics in the relationship between life satisfaction and education in South Africa using the 2008 National Income Dynamics Survey. The results indicate a strong positive association between educational attainment and individual satisfaction with life, which is true in the overall sample and for men and women. This positive relationship also holds for Black and Coloured individuals, but is insignificant in the Asian and White samples. Evidence indicates that education is a positional good, in that people who have attained more than the mean level of education in their relevant cluster are significantly more satisfied with life compared to those possessing less than the mean education.
    Keywords: subjective wellbeing, positional concerns, Education, South Africa
    JEL: I2 Z13
    Date: 2013
  5. By: Fafchamps, Marcel; Soderbom, Mans
    Abstract: Patterns of correlation in innovation and contractual practices among manufacturing firms in Ethiopia and Sudan are documented. Network data that indicate whether any two firms in the utilized sample do business with each other, buy inputs from a common supplier, or sell output to a common client are used for the analysis. Only limited support is found for the commonly held idea that firms that are more proximate in a network sense are more likely to adopt similar practices. Indeed, for certain practices, adoption decisions appear to be local strategic substitutes: if one firm in a given location uses a certain practice, nearby firms are less likely to do so. These results suggest that the diffusion of technology and new business practices may play a more limited role in spurring growth in Africa's manufacturing sector than is often assumed in the present policy discussion.
    Keywords: E-Business,Microfinance,Small Scale Enterprise,Labor Policies,Technology Industry
    Date: 2013–06–01
  6. By: Charl Jooste, Guangling (Dave) Liu and Ruthira Naraidoo
    Abstract: This paper is the first one to analyse the effect of aggregate government spending and taxes on output for South Africa using three types of a calibrated DSGE model and more data driven models such as a structural vector error correction model (SVECM) and a time-varying parameter VAR (TVP-VAR) to capture possible asymmetries and time variation of fiscal impulses. The impulse responses indicate first, that increases in government expenditure have a positive impact, albeit (at times) less than unity, on GDP in the short run; second, over the long run, the impact of government expenditure on GDP is insignificant; and third, increases in taxes decreases GDP over the short run, while having negligible effects over longer horizons.
    Keywords: Rule-of-thumb consumers, Fiscal multiplier, Government spending, TVP-VAR, SVECM
    JEL: C54 D58 E32 E62 H31
    Date: 2013
  7. By: Holden, Stein (Centre for Land Tenure Studies, Norwegian University of Life Sciences); Mangisoni, Julius (Centre for Land Tenure Studies, Norwegian University of Life Sciences)
    Abstract: After six years with a large scale Farm Input Subsidy Program that enhanced national and household food security high costs resulted in a cut-back of the program in 2011/12 at the same time as the country was hit by a more serious drought in form of a dry spell in the rainy season. This study used household and farm plot level data combined with choice experiments to assess the impacts of the cut-back of the program and the drought on maize production and the performance of different maize varieties. The demand for improved maize seeds and adoption constraints were investigated and so was the knowledge and use of conservation technologies that in recent years have been introduced by a national level extension program. One of the effects of the cut-back is that the standard package is split and shared by two or more households. The drought resulted in a reduction in maize yields of 400 kg/ha. Many of the most commonly used hybrid maize varieties performed significantly better than local maize with yields about 600 kg/ha higher than local maize. About 4.3% of the maize plots were planted with the new ZM523 drought tolerant maize variety but it did not perform better than the hybrid maize varieties and has not yet become one of the popular varieties that are in high demand. About 35% of the households stated that they failed to obtain the most preferred maize variety and these were among the most commonly grown varieties, showing that there is scope for increased adoption of such varieties. Cash constraints and high prices for improved maize and fertilizer are limiting adoption, however, and continue to be a challenge for sustainable intensification of the maize-based production system. Newly introduced conservation technologies appear promising as one way to reduce the vulnerability to drought and enhance the fertilizer use efficiency.
    Keywords: Improved maize varieties; drought; drought tolerance; input subsidies; leakage of input subsidies; targeting of subsidies; maize yields; conservation technologies; demand for maize seeds
    JEL: Q12 Q18
    Date: 2013–06–07
  8. By: Oliver, Jill; Wodon, Quentin
    Abstract: This role of faith-inspired health care providers in sub-saharan Africa and public-private partnerships is comprised of a three volume series on strengthening the evidence for faith inspired engagement in health in sub-Saharan Africa. An increasing level of interest in the role of faith in development has generated much debate and dialogue at the international and national levels over the last decade. Despite difficulties in communication and differences in cultures within such debates, there has been a continued reaffirmation of the potential benefits that faith-inspired communities can bring towards efforts to achieve the millennium development goals (MDGs), especially in the areas of health. This series focuses on assessing the role and market share of faith-inspired providers and on assessing the extent to which they are involved in and benefit from public-private partnerships. The purpose of this series is three HNP discussion papers is to round up various analytical perspectives and emerging research on faith engagement in health in Africa from a range of researchers and practitioners from the north as well as the south. The series is structured into three volumes: a first volume on the role and market share of faith-inspired providers and public-private partnerships, a second on satisfaction and the comparative nature of faith-inspired health provision, and the third on mapping of faith inspired provision and the extent to which faith-inspired providers reach to the poor.
    Keywords: ability to pay, AIDS prevention, AIDS Relief, antenatal care, block grants, chronic disease, cities, civil society organizations, clinics, communities, COMMUNITY HEALTH, cost of care, COST OF HEALTH CARE, delivery of health services, description, Developing Countries, development policy, disadvantaged patients, diseases, districts, educational services, Emergency Plan, epidemic, exercises, Global health, Global Poverty, HEALTH CARE, health care centers, health care facilities, HEALTH CARE PROVIDERS, health care provision, health care services, health centers, Health Delivery, HEALTH FACILITIES, Health Financing, health funding, health infrastructure, health initiatives, health needs, Health Organization, Health Policy, health posts, health providers, health provision, Health Sector, Health Sector Reform, health service, health service providers, health service provision, health services, health system, health systems, HIV, HIV/AIDS, homes, hospital, hospital beds, hospital care, hospitals, household surveys, households, Human Development, Human Resources, impact on health, incidence analysis, income, indigenous populations, information system, information systems, integration, international policy, international response, intervention, interventions, level of poverty, limited resources, Living Standards, local communities, Malaria, mandates, measurement techniques, midwives, Millennium Development Goals, Ministry of Health, modernization, national health, national health systems, national population, national strategies, non-governmental organizations, Nongovernmental Organizations, nurses, Nutrition, pandemic, patients, pharmacists, Policy Framework, policy level, policy makers, population groups, practitioners, prevention activities, prevention strategies, primary care, primary health care, private sector, probability, Progress, providers of health care, provision of health care, Provision of Health Services, provision of services, Public Health, public health services, PUBLIC HEALTH SPENDING, public health strategies, public life, public providers, public sector, public spending, QUALITY CARE, quality of care, quality services, religious groups, religious institutions, religious leaders, respect, risk groups, rural areas, rural health care, service delivery, settlement, significant policy, Social Services, towns, traditional healers, Tuberculosis, Universal Access, urban areas, urban centers, urbanization, voluntary sector, vulnerable groups, vulnerable populations, Waste, World Council of Churches, World Health Organization
    Date: 2012–11–01
  9. By: Lazzaroni, Sara
    Abstract: This multidisciplinary study considers the impact of short-term weather variations on food consumption of 488 rural households in Uganda. We combine World bank LSMS households panel data with data on rainfall, number of rainy days, maximum and minimum temperatures in the period 2005/06-2009/10. Triangulating the findings of the econometric model with qualitative interviews and the analysis of the agricultural sector recent developments, we argue that households are involved in ex-ante smoothing strategies while land and reduction of non-consumption expenditures seem to partially offset adverse rainfall variations.
    Keywords: weather variability, risk, food consumption, Uganda, Food Consumption/Nutrition/Food Safety, Food Security and Poverty, I31, O12, O44, Q12, Q14,
    Date: 2013–06
  10. By: Chance Mwabutwa, Manoel Bittencourt and Nicola Viegi
    Abstract: This paper estimates a Bayesian Dynamic Stochastic General Equilibrium (DSGE) model of Malawi and uses it to account for short-run monetary policy response to aid inflows between 1980 and 2010. In particular, the paper evaluates the existence of a “Dutch Disease†following an increase in foreign aid and examines the Reserve Bank of Malawi (RBM) reaction to aid inflows under different monetary policy rules. The paper finds strong evidence of “Taylor rule†like response of monetary policy to aid inflows. It also shows that a ‘Dutch Disease’ did not exist in Malawi because aid inflows were found to be associated with currency depreciation and not the expected real currency appreciation. There is also evidence of a low impact of a positive aid shock on currency depreciation and inflation when RBM engages in targeting monetary aggregates than when the authorities use the Taylor rule and incomplete sterilisation.
    Keywords: Taylor rule, DSGE model, Rule-of-Thumb, Spending, Absorption, Foreign exchange Rate
    JEL: C11 C13 E52 E62 F31 F35
    Date: 2013
  11. By: Furio Camillo Rosati (University of Rome "Tor Vergata" and UCW); Jacobus de Hoop (University of Rome "Tor Vergata" and UCW)
    Abstract: Using data from BRIGHT, an integrated program that aims to improve school participation in rural communities in Burkina Faso, we investigate the impact of school subsidies and increased access to education on child work. Regression discontinuity estimates demonstrate that, while BRIGHT substantially improved school participation, it did not reduce – in fact may have increased - children’s participation in economic activities and household chores. This combination of increased school participation and work can be explained by the introduction of a simple non convexity in the standard model of altruistic utility maximizing households. If education programmes are implemented to achieve a combination of increased school participation and a reduction in child work they may either have to be combined with different interventions that effectively reduce child work or they may have to be tuned more carefully to the incentives and constraints the child labourer faces.
    Keywords: Burkina Faso, child labour, regression discontinuity, school participation.
    JEL: I25 J22 J24 O12 O55
    Date: 2013–05–30
  12. By: Julian Jamison (Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, D.C.); Dean Karlan (Economic Growth Center, Yale University); Pia Raffler (Department of Political Science, Yale University)
    Abstract: We evaluate the impact of a health information intervention implemented through mobile phones, using a clustered randomized control trial augmented by qualitative interviews. The intervention aimed to improve sexual health knowledge and shift individuals towards safer sexual behavior by providing reliable information about sexual health. The novel technology designed by Google and Grameen Technology Center provided automated searches of an advice database on topics requested by users via SMS. It was offered by MTN Uganda at no cost to users. Quantitative survey results allow us to reject the hypothesis that improving access to information would increase knowledge and shift behavior to less risky sexual activities. In fact, we find that the service led to an increase in promiscuity, and no shift in perception of norms. Qualitative focus groups discussions support the findings of the quantitative survey results. We conclude by discussing a potential mechanism explaining the counterintuitive findings.
    Keywords: information technology for development, mhealth, ICT4D, sexual health
    JEL: D13 O12 O31 O33
    Date: 2013–05
  13. By: Cheikh Tidiane Ndiaye (LEO - Laboratoire d'économie d'Orleans - CNRS : UMR7322 - Université d'Orléans); Mamadou Abdoulaye Konte (GERSEG - Groupe de Recherche en Economique et de Gestion - Université Gaston Berger de Saint-Louis (Sénégal))
    Abstract: Les chocs semblent être l'une des principales sources de réactivité des politiques macroéconomiques dans la zone UEMOA. L'objet de cet article est d'évaluer la capacité de résilience de ces politiques. Nous utilisons pour cela un modèle VAR Bayésien en panel susceptible d'évaluer dans quel cadre les chocs influencent ces politiques macroéconomiques de stabilisation. Les résultats suggèrent que les politiques budgétaires nationales s'ajustent aux chocs avec une marge de manœuvre très limitée tandis que l'efficacité relative de la politique monétaire se manifeste à travers le degré de réaction face aux chocs affectant l'inflation, le taux d'importation et les termes de l'échange.
    Keywords: Chocs, Stabilisation, Politique Monétaire, Politique Budgétaire
    Date: 2012–11–23
  14. By: Nathalie Guilbert (PSL, Université Paris-Dauphine, IRD,LEDa, UMR DIAL)
    Abstract: (english) This paper uses data from recent Senegalese Demographic and Health Surveys to explore the link between female empowerment and child mortality via early marriage, defined as marriage before age 16. There exist three channels through which early marriage reduces a mother's ability to take good care of her children: the harmful physical consequences of early sex and pregnancy; a disrupted education; and reduced autonomy and bargaining power. Controlling for the first two of these allows us to isolate the empowerment effect of early marriage. We estimate that it increases the probability that the mother experience at least one son death by 4.43%, and raises the number of dead sons per mother by 0.074. Particular attention is paid to discuss and address endogeneity issues. We also further investigate the heterogeneity of impact by current age and marriage duration. Findings suggest that we effectively identify the empowerment channel. _________________________________ (français) Cet article utilise les données des Enquêtes Démographiques et de Santé collectées en 2005 et en 2010 au Sénégal pour explorer le lien entre autonomisation des femmes et mortalité infantile, via la pratique du mariage précoce. Le mariage précoce est défini comme tout mariage ayant lieu avant que la jeune fille ait atteint 16 ans. Cette pratique est encore très répandue au Sénégal où 34,4% des femmes mariées sont concernées. Il existe trois canaux via lesquels le mariage précoce réduit l’aptitude des femmes à prendre bien soin de leurs enfants. Le premier est lié aux conséquences physiques désastreuses des rapports sexuels et grossesses précoces. Le deuxième découle du manque d’éducation formelle et informelle reçue par ces jeunes femmes pour lesquelles toute opportunité d’aller à l’école est interrompue précocement par le mariage. Le troisième ressort de l’absence de pouvoir de négociation des femmes au sein de leur ménage et de leur absence d’autonomie. En contrôlant pour les deux premiers canaux, nous sommes en mesure d’isoler l’impact spécifique du canal d’autonomisation des femmes sur la mortalité infantile. On estime alors que cette absence de pouvoir de négociation des femmes, exacerbée dans le cas des mariages précoces, accroît la probabilité d’une femme de voir un de ses fils décédés avant l’âge de 5 ans de 4,43% et leur nombre de 0,074. L’impact sur la mortalité des filles est non significatif. Une attention particulière a été portée à discuter et résoudre les problèmes d’endogénéité auxquels nous faisons face dans cette étude. Nous avons aussi creusé l’hétérogénéité de l’impact en fonction de l’âge actuel de la femme et du nombre d’années passées dans l’union, ceci afin de confirmer que l’on identifie bien le canal d’autonomisation des femmes. En effet, avec le temps, la connaissance du ménage d’accueil et un âge plus élevé qui confère un certain statut social, il est probable que l’effet « pouvoir de négociation » du mariage précoce s’amenuise. C’est effectivement ce que l’on observe.
    Keywords: Early marriage, Senegal, Fertility, Child Mortality, Women Empowerment, Bargaining Power, Mariage précoce, Sénégal, fécondité, mortalité infantile, autonomisation des femmes, pouvoir de négociation.
    JEL: J12 J13 I14
    Date: 2013–05
  15. By: Rémi Generoso (Cemotev - Centre d'études sur la mondialisation, les conflits, les territoires et les vulnérabilités - Université de Versailles Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines : EA4457)
    Abstract: L'objectif de cet article est d'évaluer l'impact économique des transferts de fonds issus de la migration dans les pays d'Afrique de l'Ouest caractérisés par une forte irrégularité inter-annuelle de la pluviométrie. Plus précisément, nous cherchons à vérifier si les transferts de fonds répondent aux chocs pluviométriques et comment cet ajustement impacte les performances macroéconomiques de ces pays. Nous estimons un modèle VAR en panel (PVAR) entre 1975 et 2009 sur huit pays africain divisés entre deux sous climats : un premier climat de type sahélien et sec et un second climat soudanien plus humide. Nos résultats montrent que la variabilité des précipitations impacte négativement l'activité économique et positivement les transferts de fonds dans les pays sahéliens. En retour, les chocs positifs sur les transferts de fonds augmentent les importations agricoles dans ces mêmes pays, plus vulnérables à la variabilité des précipitations.
    Keywords: transferts de fonds ; variabilité des précipitations ; Afrique de l'Ouest ; PVAR ; filtre de Kalman
    Date: 2012
  16. By: Andres, L.; Lebailly, Ph.
    Abstract: During the last decade, the Niger’s population has been affected by the food crisis (2001, 2004-2005, 2008, 2010-2011). Each year, she is subjected to many structural and temporary shocks. The structural shocks are caused by the chronicle difficulties (income) while the temporary shocks are tied at the "natural" disasters such as the hydrometeorological disasters, demographic crisis. The risk that the people fall in a state of food insecurity because of structural and temporary shocks is characterized by food vulnerability. The food vulnerability is defined as “the analysis of coping strategies and reactions faced with the structural or/and temporary shocks, if the coping strategies are not effectives, the people have in a temporary or structural food vulnerability” (Andres L. and Lebailly Ph., 2011). The target of this paper is to demonstrate the diversity of coping strategies in the different departments of Niger. The database is created as from an annual survey realized by the Early Alert System (EAS) and the Statistical National Institute of Niger (INS). This survey characterizes the state of food insecurity of households of Niger. The investigations of the household are based on stratified sampling. It exists two levels: region and enumeration areas. The investigations of the household are based from the database of the population census of 2001. This population census has determined the “enumeration areas”. These “enumeration areas” are defined as a “geographical area of 200 households on average” (INS, 2007). The sample of this investigation is established from a significant sample a point of view of the departments of Niger. The time period studied is spread the 2008 at 2011. The results have demonstrated that the departments of Tchintarabaden, Abalak, Tessaoua and Magaria have weakest number of collective meals, and the highest percentage of household practicing of selling the goods and land. Furthermore, the Niger’s population develops many strategies to struggle against the shocks.
    Keywords: coping strategy, food vulnerability, Niger, Agricultural and Food Policy, Food Security and Poverty, D81,
    Date: 2013–06

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