nep-afr New Economics Papers
on Africa
Issue of 2014‒11‒28
twelve papers chosen by
Sam Sarpong
The University of Mines and Technology

  1. Women's empowerment in action: Evidence from a randomized control trial in Africa By Oriana Bandiera; Niklas Buehren; Robin Burgess; Markus Goldstein; Selim Gulesci; Imran Rasul; Munshi Sulaiman
  2. Efficiency of health systems in sub-Sahara Africa: a comparative analysis of time varying stochastic frontier models By Novignon, Jacob; Lawanson, Akanni
  3. Labor Productivity in Rural African Enterprises: Empirical Evidence from the LSMS-ISA By Nagler, Paula; Naudé, Wim
  4. Welfare Effects of Policy-induced Rising Food Prices on Farm Households in Nigeria By Shittu, Adebayo M.; Obayelu, Oluwakemi A.; Salman, Kabir K.
  5. Are There Gender Differences in the Perceived Impact of Land Security? Evidence from Urban Lesotho By Muraoka, Rie; Maredia, Mywish K.; Jin, Songqing; Schultink, Gerhardus
  6. More than adopters: the welfare impacts of farmer innovation in rural Ghana By Tambo, Justice A.; Wünscher, Tobias
  7. Rural Households’ Access, Willingness to Pay (WTP) and Factors Influencing WTP for Safe Water and Sanitation in Southwest Nigeria By Dare, Alaba Modupe
  8. Land Fragmentation with Double Bonuses -- The Case of Tanzanian Agriculture By Rao, Xudong
  9. Longitudinal analysis of child malnutrition trends in Ghana By Ross, Kara; Shanoyan, Aleksan; Zereyesus, Yacob
  10. Effect of Women’s Empowerment on Children’s Well-being in Northern Ghana By Zereyesus, Yacob; Ross, Kara; Shanoyan, Aleksan; Amanor-Boadu, Vincent
  11. Modeling Food Retail Format Choice and Shopping Frequency Decision in Urban Ghana: A Multivariate Ordered Probit Regression Application By Meng, Ting; Florkowski, Wojciech J.; Sarpong, Daniel B.; Chinnan, Manjeet S.; Resurreccion, Anna V. A.
  12. Targeting Of Subsidized Fertilizer Under Kenya’s National Accelerated Agricultural Input Access Program (NAAIAP) By Sheahan, Megan; Olwande, John; Kirimi, Lilian; Jayne, T.S.

  1. By: Oriana Bandiera; Niklas Buehren; Robin Burgess; Markus Goldstein; Selim Gulesci; Imran Rasul; Munshi Sulaiman
    Abstract: Women in developing countries are disempowered relative to their contemporaries in developed countries. High youth unemployment and early marriage and childbearing interact to limit human capital investment and enforce dependence on men. In this paper we evaluate an attempt to jump-start adolescent women’s empowerment in the world’s second youngest country: Uganda. In this two-pronged intervention, adolescent girls are simultaneously provided vocational training and information on sex, reproduction and marriage. Relative to adolescents in control communities, after two years the intervention raises the likelihood that girls engage in income generating activities by 72% (mainly driven by increased participation in self-employment), and raises their monthly consumption expenditures by 41%. Teen pregnancy falls by 26%, and early entry into marriage/cohabitation falls by 58%. Strikingly, the share of girls reporting sex against their will drops from 14% to almost half that level and preferred ages of marriage and childbearing both move forward. The findings indicate that women’s economic and social empowerment can be jump-started through the combined provision of vocational and life skills, and is not necessarily held back by insurmountable constraints arising from binding social norms.
    JEL: I25 J13 J24 O12
    Date: 2014
  2. By: Novignon, Jacob; Lawanson, Akanni
    Abstract: The purpose of the current study was to estimate efficiency of health systems in sub-Sahara Africa (SSA) and to compare efficiency estimates from various time-varying frontier models. The study used data for 45 countries in SSA from 2005 to 2011 sourced from the Word Bank World Development Indicators. Parametric time-varying stochastic frontier models were used in the analysis. Infant survival rate was used as the outcome variable, while per-capita health expenditure was used as main controllable input. The results show some variations in efficiency estimates among the various models. Estimates from the ‘true’ random effect model were however preferable after controlling for unobserved heterogeneity which was captured in the inefficiency terms of the other frontier models. The results also suggest a wide variation in the efficiency of health systems in sub-Sahara Africa. On average health system efficiency was estimated to be approximately 0.80 which implies resource wastage of about 0.20. Cape Verde, Mauritius and Tanzania were estimated to be relatively efficient while Angola, Equatorial Guinea and Sierra Leone were among the least performers in terms of health system efficiency. The findings suggest that the omission of unobserved heterogeneity may lead to bias in estimated inefficiency. The ‘true’ random effect model was identified to address the problem of unobserved heterogeneity. The findings also suggest a generally poor performance of health systems in terms of efficiency in the use of resources. While resource commitment to the health sector is critical, it is important to also ensure the efficient use of these resources. Improving the performance of institutions in the health sector may go a long way in improving the general health status of the African population
    Keywords: Efficiency, Health systems, health expenditure, SSA, SFA, 'True' random effect
    JEL: I00 I1 I12
    Date: 2014–07–11
  3. By: Nagler, Paula (Maastricht University); Naudé, Wim (Maastricht University)
    Abstract: Although non-farm enterprises are ubiquitous in rural Sub-Saharan Africa, little is yet known about their productivity. In this paper we contribute to filling this gap by providing estimates of labor productivity in enterprises for Ethiopia, Malawi, Nigeria, and Uganda. Using the World Bank's LSMS-ISA database, we find that rural enterprises are on average less productive than those in urban areas, and that female-owned enterprises are less productive than male-owned enterprises. By estimating Heckman selection and panel data models, we find that education and access to credit are associated with higher labor productivity, while households that experience shocks operate less productive enterprises. Furthermore we provide evidence that enterprises that operate throughout the year are more productive. We conclude that gender, education, shocks, access to finance, and location matter for labor productivity in rural Africa, and that policy decisions tackling the shortcomings could significantly contribute to a better business environment and increased labor productivity.
    Keywords: entrepreneurship, informal sector, labor productivity, rural development, Sub-Saharan Africa
    JEL: J43 L26 M13 O13 O55 Q12
    Date: 2014–10
  4. By: Shittu, Adebayo M.; Obayelu, Oluwakemi A.; Salman, Kabir K.
    Abstract: Against the background that domestic policies in Nigeria have been linked to an endemic - high, volatile and rising food prices in the country, this paper empirically examined the transmission of key monetary policy variables to domestic food prices in Nigeria. Furthermore, the study employed estimates of policy induced price changes from estimated cointegrating relations between commodity prices and policy variables, and demand elasticities from a system of household demand equations to estimate the associated compensating variation as a measure of the welfare impacts on farm households. The study found that government management of exchange rates and money supplies as well as withdrawal of subsidies from petroleum products have been the main driver of rising food prices in the country. While an average farmer was found to have benefited from the policy induced rising food prices with the mean compensated variation of -3.3% of the household budget, most of the farm households ended up being losers. The gainers were mostly owners of the relatively few large farms (-36.9%) including the commercial livestock farms (-38.9%), rice farm (-35.0%), and fish farms (-27.8%). Smallholders, which constituted about three-quarter of the farm households, lost on the average, about 8.1% of their purchasing power to the rising food prices, with female headed households also loosing 6.6% of their purchasing power.
    Keywords: Welfare Effects, Policy-induced price changes, QUAIDS Model, Farm Households, Nigeria, Agricultural and Food Policy, Consumer/Household Economics, Demand and Price Analysis, D12, E42,
    Date: 2014
  5. By: Muraoka, Rie; Maredia, Mywish K.; Jin, Songqing; Schultink, Gerhardus
    Abstract: As part of the Millennium Challenge Corporation Compact Agreement, the Government of Lesotho has implemented an institutional strengthening and land regularization project in the urban and peri-urban areas of the capital city Maseru. The main objective of this project is to strengthen the rights of the legitimate occupiers of the land by a process of formalizing those rights. This formalization process of the rights to land is expected to promote private sector development and stimulate economic growth. The Compact Agreement has also supported training and public awareness to promote increased understanding and acceptance of gender equality and to ensure equal access by women to economic resources and opportunities. This paper explores gender differences in the perceived effects of securing land rights on behavioral outcomes related to household participation in land market and economic investments. It presents descriptive and analytical results of a cross-sectional data based on a household survey conducted in 2013 in four northern municipal councils of greater Maseru. Preliminary results indicate that on many indicators of perceived effect of secured land rights, there are no gender differences. Econometrics analysis to identify factors that determine different behavioral outcomes in terms of market participation and land investment is further explored.
    Keywords: Land rights, women's right, gender equality, Lease, impact evaluation, Lesotho, International Development, Land Economics/Use,
    Date: 2014
  6. By: Tambo, Justice A.; Wünscher, Tobias
    Abstract: With the rapidly changing economic environments and numerous challenges hindering smallholders’ adoption of externally developed technologies, it is often argued that farmers’ innovations may be essential in the livelihoods of rural farm households and need to be promoted. Yet a rigorous assessment of the impacts of farmer innovation is lacking. Consequently, we analyse the effect of farmer innovation on household welfare, measured by farm and household income, consumption expenditure and food security. Using data from a recent field survey of rural farm households in northern Ghana and endogenous switching regression which controls for non-random selection bias, we estimate the welfare gains for innovators from innovating, and non-innovators had they innovated. We find that farmer innovation significantly improves both household income and consumption expenditure for innovators. It also contributes significantly to the reduction of food insecurity among innovative households by increasing household food consumption expenditure, reducing the length of food shortages, and decreasing the severity of hunger. However, we find that the positive productivity and income effects of farmer innovation do not significantly translate into nutritious diet, measured by household dietary diversity. The results also indicate that farmer innovation would have heterogeneous welfare effects for non-innovators, had they decided to innovate. Overall, our results show positive and significant welfare effects of farmer innovation, hence, support increasing arguments on the need to promote farmer innovation as a complement to externally promoted technologies in food security and poverty reduction efforts.
    Keywords: Farmer innovation, Endogenous switching regression, Ghana, Household welfare, Impact assessment, Food Consumption/Nutrition/Food Safety, Food Security and Poverty, International Development, Production Economics, Research and Development/Tech Change/Emerging Technologies,
    Date: 2014
  7. By: Dare, Alaba Modupe
    Abstract: Access to safe water and sanitation is one of the core development indicators recently gaining pre-eminence in Nigeria. This study examined rural households’ access, willingness to pay (WTP) and factors influencing WTP for safe water and sanitation. The study was conducted in Ogun State, Nigeria. A cross sectional survey which involved the use of questionnaire was used. A dichotomous choice (DC) with follow-up was used as elicitation method. A multi-stage random sampling technique was used to select 160 rural households. Descriptive statistics and Logit regression model was used for data estimation. Results revealed that 24.4% had access to safe water; 21.3% and 6.2% had access to improved toilet and refuse dumping sites. Most respondents showed WTP for these improved services. Sex (p<0.01), occupation (p<0.01) and income (p<0.1) significantly influenced rural households’ likelihood WTP for these facilities. Inference from this study showed that rural dwellers’ access to safe water and sanitation is highly deplorable. Governments and stakeholders should encourage and support to rural people by providing these facilities given their willingness to pay for it.
    Keywords: Safe water, sanitation, Willingness to pay (WTP), Community/Rural/Urban Development, Consumer/Household Economics,
    Date: 2014–07
  8. By: Rao, Xudong
    Abstract: Land fragmentation, also known as scattered land holdings, is a common phenomenon in agriculture around the world. In some cases, it has even persisted through government-supported land consolidation programs that aim to improve agricultural productivity. This study evaluates the effect of land fragmentation on agricultural production and hypothesizes that it may be beneficial to farmers by diversifying risk onto separate land plots that usually have heterogeneous growing conditions. Applying a stochastic frontier model to the Tanzania Living Standards Measurement Study (LSMS) data, we find evidence to support the risk-reduction hypothesis and indications that land fragmentation may be conducive to efficiency. This second finding may seem counter-intuitive but is also supported by similar studies. We further argue that accounting for risk preferences that are absent from current framework in future research may help explain the double bonuses of land fragmentation.
    Keywords: Agricultural productivity, land fragmentation, risk management, stochastic production frontier, Agricultural and Food Policy, Crop Production/Industries, International Development, Land Economics/Use, Production Economics, Productivity Analysis, Risk and Uncertainty, Q12, Q15, Q18,
    Date: 2014–04
  9. By: Ross, Kara; Shanoyan, Aleksan; Zereyesus, Yacob
    Keywords: child malnutrition, Ghana, Food Security and Poverty, International Development,
    Date: 2014
  10. By: Zereyesus, Yacob; Ross, Kara; Shanoyan, Aleksan; Amanor-Boadu, Vincent
    Keywords: Health Economics and Policy, International Development,
    Date: 2014
  11. By: Meng, Ting; Florkowski, Wojciech J.; Sarpong, Daniel B.; Chinnan, Manjeet S.; Resurreccion, Anna V. A.
    Keywords: joint distribution, conditional distribution, cross equation correlation, Agricultural and Food Policy, Consumer/Household Economics, Food Consumption/Nutrition/Food Safety,
    Date: 2014–05
  12. By: Sheahan, Megan; Olwande, John; Kirimi, Lilian; Jayne, T.S.
    Abstract: A new wave of “market smart” modern input subsidy schemes has emerged in sub-Saharan Africa over the past decade with the promise of increasing input use and grain yields while building or complementing private sector efforts. We study the extent to which geographic and household level targeting under Kenya’s National Accelerated Agricultural Input Access Program (NAAIAP) has remained true to its “market smart” objectives using household level panel data from before and during the initial years of program implementation (2007-2010).
    Keywords: Public Economics,
    Date: 2014–10

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