nep-afr New Economics Papers
on Africa
Issue of 2016‒07‒16
ten papers chosen by
Sam Sarpong
The University of Mines and Technology

  1. Mining-related national systems of innovation in southern Africa National trajectories and regional integration By Judith Fessehaie; Zavareh Rustomjee; Lauralyn Kaziboni
  2. Cash Transfers and Gender: A closer look at the Zambian Child Grant Programme By Luisa Natali; Amber Peterman; UNICEF Office of Research - Innocenti
  3. Can mining promote industrialization? A comparative analysis of policy frameworks in three Southern African countries By Judith Fessehaie; Zavareh Rustomjee; Lauralyn Kaziboni
  4. Mobile Phone Penetration, Mobile Banking and Inclusive Development in Africa By Simplice Asongu; Jacinta C. Nwachukwu
  5. Military expenditure, terrorism and capital flight: Insights from Africa By Simplice Asongu; Joseph Amankwah-Amoah
  6. The Fertility Transition: Panel Evidence from sub-Saharan Africa By Carolyn Chisadza and Manoel Bittencourt; Manoel Bittencourt
  7. Financial development and income inequality in Africa: A panel heterogeneous approach By Anthanasius FomumTita and Meshach Jesse Aziakpono
  8. The Influence of Ancestral Lifeways on Individual Economic Outcomes in Sub-Saharan Africa By Michalopoulos, Stelios; Putterman, Louis; Weil, David
  9. Selling daughters: age of marriage, income shocks and the bride price tradition By Lucia Corno; Alessandra Voena
  10. Fear and Political Participation: Evidence from Africa By Kevin M. Morrison; Marc Rockmore

  1. By: Judith Fessehaie; Zavareh Rustomjee; Lauralyn Kaziboni
    Abstract: This paper explores the linkages between the national systems of innovation of Botswana, South Africa, Zambia, and Zimbabwe and their respective mineral extraction and mineral processing value chains, including input industries. Our analysis reveals four individual national systems of innovation, with different outcomes in terms of engineering skills development, technical vocational education and training, research and development, innovation capabilities, and competitiveness of the domestic engineering consultancy services. These national systems of innovation are tentatively interconnected as an embryonic regional system of innovation, including institutional relationships, cross-border investment flows, flows of mining-related goods and services, and intra-Southern African Development Community flows of students, lecturers, technicians, and engineers. Notwithstanding important dynamics related to skills development and competence building happening across borders, more collaborative and synergistic initiatives between government, industry, and teaching and research institutions are required to shape a more balanced and coherent regional systems of innovation.
    Keywords: national system of innovation, linkage development, human capital and industrialization, southern Africa, resource-based industrialization, Southern African Development Community
    Date: 2016
  2. By: Luisa Natali; Amber Peterman; UNICEF Office of Research - Innocenti
    Abstract: In 2010, the Zambian Ministry of Community Development, Mother and Child Health began implementation of the Child Grant Programme with the goals of reducing extreme poverty and breaking the inter-generational cycle of poverty. The impact of the grant was explored across a range of outcomes for women over the medium term (two to four years). One of the difficult aspects of assessing this evidence is the myriad of indicators used to measure ‘empowerment’. For example, researchers have used indicators ranging from women’s intra-household decision-making to social networks, land or asset ownership, and interpret all these as ‘empowerment’, making it difficult to draw conclusions. The analysis is complemented with qualitative data to understand the meaning women and men place on empowerment in the rural communities. Although more evidence is needed to understand how cash transfers can empower women in Africa, women’s savings and participation in small businesses were seen to have increased, giving them more autonomy over cash and improving their financial standing.
    Keywords: cash transfers; women's empowerment; zambia;
    Date: 2016
  3. By: Judith Fessehaie; Zavareh Rustomjee; Lauralyn Kaziboni
    Abstract: This paper explores the potential to leverage large-scale mineral extraction in Botswana, Zambia, and Zimbabwe to foster mineral beneficiation and upstream industries. The evidence suggests that the success or failure of a resource-based industrialization approach is country and sector specific, requiring the deployment of different and appropriately tailored policy instruments. We also find that the design and implementation of resource-based industrialization policies is heavily influenced by power relationships, in terms of control over mining rents, relationships between mining companies and domestic business, and across different segments of the domestic business sector.
    Keywords: linkage development, supplier development, beneficiation, Southern Africa, resource-based industrialization
    Date: 2016
  4. By: Simplice Asongu (Yaoundé/Cameroun); Jacinta C. Nwachukwu (Coventry University)
    Abstract: The study assesses the role of mobile phones and mobile banking in decreasing inequality in 52 African countries. The empirical procedure involves first, examining the income-redistributive effect of mobile phone penetration and then investigating the contribution of mobile banking services in this relationship. The findings suggest an equalizing income-redistributive effect of ‘mobile phone penetration’ and ‘mobile banking’, with a higher income-equalizing effect from mobile banking compared to mobile phone penetration. Poverty alleviation channels explaining this difference in inequality mitigating propensity are discussed.
    Keywords: Banking; Mobile Phones; Shadow Economy; Financial Development; Africa
    JEL: E00 G20 L96 O17 O33
    Date: 2016–01
  5. By: Simplice Asongu (Yaoundé/Cameroun); Joseph Amankwah-Amoah (Bristol, UK)
    Abstract: In spite of the growing consensus of the need to utilise military expenditure to help combat terrorism, our understanding of the threshold at which military expenditure reduces the effect of terrorism stemming from capital flight remains largely underexplored. We employed a panel data of 37 African countries from 1996-2010 and determined that the thresholds are apparent exclusively in Quantile Regressions with military expenditure thresholds ranging from: 4.224 to 5.612 for domestic terrorism, 5.734 to 7.363 for unclear terrorism and 4.710 to 6.617 for total terrorism. No thresholds are apparent in transnational terrorism related regressions. Depending on the terrorist target, the findings broadly show that a critical mass of between 4.224 and 7.363 of military expenditure as a percentage of GDP is needed to reverse the effects of terrorism stemming from capital flight. Implications for public policy are discussed.
    Keywords: Capital flight; military expenditure; terrorism; Africa
    JEL: C50 D74 F23 N40 O55
    Date: 2016–06
  6. By: Carolyn Chisadza and Manoel Bittencourt; Manoel Bittencourt
    Abstract: We investigate the effects of different socioeconomic indicators on fertility rates in 48 sub-Saharan African countries between 1970 and 2012. The results, based on panel analysis with fixed effects and instrumental variables, show that initially income per capita and infant mortality explain a signiÂ…cant part of the fertility decline in the region. However, the introduction of technology as an instrument augments the effect of education in reducing fertility. The results also provide signiÂ…cant evidence for fertility declines through increased female education. These results support empirical evidence of the uniÂ…ed growth theory which emphasises the role of technology in raising the demand for education and bringing about a demographic transition during the Post-Malthusian period.
    Keywords: Fertility, Sub-Saharan Africa
    JEL: I25 J13 O55
    Date: 2016
  7. By: Anthanasius FomumTita and Meshach Jesse Aziakpono
    Abstract: Although the financial sector of Africa has witnessed massive reforms to enhance its ability to support economic activities, reduce poverty and lower income inequality, Africa remains the poorest region and the second most unequal region in the world after Latin America. Despite these established facts, little empirical research exists on the relationship between financial development and income inequality in Africa. This study investigates the finance-income inequality nexus in a balanced panel of 15 African countries using the Augmented Mean Group estimator to determine if there is a threshold level of financial development or income inequality is related to the sectoral structure of the economy.Overall evidence suggests that the finance-inequality relationship in the sample of African countries studied is non-linear and ranges from an inverted u-shape to a u-shape depending on the measure of financial development. Policies to boost financial development should be preceded by financial inclusion but these policies should be separated. Financial inclusion policies should focus on the quality and suitability of financial products to ensure usage and avoid dominant accounts as well as consumer protection.
    Keywords: Augmented mean group, financial development, heterogeneous slopes, income inequality and poverty
    JEL: C23 G21 D63 I3
    Date: 2016
  8. By: Michalopoulos, Stelios; Putterman, Louis; Weil, David
    Abstract: Does a person's historical lineage influence his or her current economic status? Motivated by a large literature in social sciences stressing the effect of an early transition to agriculture on current economic performance at the level of countries, we examine the relative contemporary status of individuals as a function of how much their ancestors relied on agriculture during the pre-industrial era. We focus on Africa, where by combining anthropological records of groups with individual-level survey data we can explore the effect of the historical lifeways of one's forefathers. Within enumeration areas and occupational groups, we find that individuals from ethnicities that derived a larger share of subsistence from agriculture in the pre-colonial era are today more educated and wealthy. A tentative exploration of channels suggests that differences in attitudes and beliefs as well as differential treatment by others, including differential political power, may contribute to these divergent outcomes.
    Keywords: Africa; agriculture; Culture; Development; Ethnicity
    JEL: J6 N37 O15 Z1
    Date: 2016–06
  9. By: Lucia Corno (Institute for Fiscal Studies and Queen Mary, University of London); Alessandra Voena (Institute for Fiscal Studies and University of Chicago)
    Abstract: When markets are incomplete, cultural norms may play an important role in shaping economic behavior. In this paper, we explore whether income shocks increase the probability of child marriages in societies that engage in bride price payments – transfers from the groom to the bride’s parents at marriage. We develop a simple model in which households are exposed to income volatility and have no access to credit markets. If a daughter marries, the household obtains a bride price and has fewer members to support. In this framework, girls have a higher probability of marrying early when their parents have higher marginal utility of consumption because of adverse income shocks. We test the prediction of the model by exploiting variation in rainfall shocks over a woman’s life cycle, using a survey dataset from rural Tanzania. We find that adverse shocks during teenage years increase the probability of early marriages and early fertility among women.
    Keywords: Child marriage, marriage payments, income shocks, consumption smoothing.
    Date: 2016–06–17
  10. By: Kevin M. Morrison (University of Pittsburgh); Marc Rockmore (Clark University, Worcester)
    Abstract: Research finds that personal exposure to violence or crime increases political participation. The effects of fear, however, have not been studied. Since the number of victims is much smaller than those who are afraid of becoming a victim, this suggests an important but unexplored channel from crime to political participation. Moreover, if people who experience violence or crime are also afraid of future exposure, existing estimates conflate the effects of past experience with those of fear of future exposure. We find that fear of crime accounts for 10-23 percent of the effect previously attributed to direct exposure. We further find important differences between the effects of fear and victimization on political attitudes. Whereas victims of crimes have more authoritarian political attitudes, people who are fearful of crime are more supportive of democracy and equality, and hold other attitudes that are normally associated with rule of law and democracy.
    Date: 2016–07

This nep-afr issue is ©2016 by Sam Sarpong. It is provided as is without any express or implied warranty. It may be freely redistributed in whole or in part for any purpose. If distributed in part, please include this notice.
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