nep-dev New Economics Papers
on Development
Issue of 2013‒11‒14
eight papers chosen by
Jacob A. Jordaan
Utrecht University

  1. Admission is free only if your dad is rich! distributional effects of corruption in schools in developing countries By Emran, M. Shahe; Islam, Asadul; Shilpi, Forhad
  2. Women’s Education: Harbinger of Another Spring? Evidence from a Natural Experiment in Turkey By Mehmet Alper Dinçer; Neeraj Kaushal; Michael Grossman
  3. Can political empowerment help economic empowerment ? women leaders and female labor force participation in India By Ghani, Ejaz; Mani, Anandi; O'Connell, Stephen D.
  4. Entrepreneurship versus Joblessness: Explaining the Rise in Self-Employment By Paolo Falco; Luke Haywood
  5. Use of health care among the urban poor in Africa: Does the neighbourhood have an impact? By Georges KONE; Richard Lalou; Martine Audibert; Hervé LAFARGE; Stéphanie Dos Santos; Jean-Yves Le Hesran
  6. The Impact of Microcredit on the Poor in Bangladesh: Revisiting the Evidence By Roodman, David; Morduch, Jonathan
  7. Evaluating Aid for Trade: A Survey of Recent Studies By Olivier Cadot; Ana Fernandes; Julien Gourdon; Aaditya Mattoo; Jaime de Melo
  8. Aspiration failure: a poverty trap for indigenous children in Peru? By Laure Pasquier-Doumer; Fiorella Risso Brandon

  1. By: Emran, M. Shahe; Islam, Asadul; Shilpi, Forhad
    Abstract: In the standard model of corruption, the rich are more likely to pay bribes for their children's education, reflecting higher ability to pay. This prediction is, however, driven by the assumption that the probability of punishment for bribe-taking is invariant across households. In many developing countries lacking in rule of law, this assumption is untenable, because the enforcement of law is not impersonal or unbiased and the poor have little bargaining power. In a more realistic model where the probability of punishment depends on the household's economic status, bribes are likely to be regressive, both at the extensive and intensive margins. Using rainfall variations as an instrument for household income in rural Bangladesh, this paper finds strong evidence that corruption in schools is doubly regressive: (i) the poor are more likely to pay bribes, and (ii) among the bribe payers, the poor pay a higher share of their income. The results indicate that progressivity in bribes reported in the earlier literature may be due to identification challenges. The Ordinary Least Squares regressions show that bribes increase with household income, but the Instrumental Variables estimates suggest that the Ordinary Least Squares results are spurious, driven by selection on ability and preference. The evidence reported in this paper implies that"free schooling"is free only for the rich and corruption makes the playing field skewed against the poor. This may provide a partial explanation for the observed educational immobility in developing countries.
    Keywords: Rural Poverty Reduction,Public Sector Corruption&Anticorruption Measures,Labor Policies,Inequality,Economic Theory&Research
    Date: 2013–10–01
  2. By: Mehmet Alper Dinçer; Neeraj Kaushal; Michael Grossman
    Abstract: We use the 1997 Education Law in Turkey that increased compulsory formal schooling from five to eight years to study the effect of women’s education on a range of outcomes relating to women’s fertility, their children’s health and measures of empowerment. We apply an instrumental variables methodology and find that a 10 percentage point increase in the proportion of ever married women with eight years of schooling lowered number of pregnancies per woman by 0.13 and number of children per women by 0.11. There is also some evidence of a decline in child mortality, caused by mother’s education, but effects turn statistically insignificant in our preferred models. We also find that a 10 percentage point increase in the proportion with eight years of schooling raised the proportion of women using modern family planning methods by eight to nine percent and the proportion of women with knowledge of their ovulation cycle by five to seven percent. However, we find little evidence that schooling changed women’s attitudes towards gender equality.
    JEL: I1 I24 I25 J12 J13 J16
    Date: 2013–10
  3. By: Ghani, Ejaz; Mani, Anandi; O'Connell, Stephen D.
    Abstract: This study examines whether political empowerment of women affects their economic participation. In the context of mandated political representation reform for women in India, the study finds that the length of exposure to women politicians affects overall female labor force participation. These effects seem to arise through direct and indirect channels: political representation of women directly affects hours of work assigned to women under the recent national public works program, the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme. In addition, the level of access to public goods, as influenced by exposure to women leaders over time, increases the likelihood of women being engaged in the labor force. The findings suggest that women's participation in politics could be a useful policy tool to increase both the supply of and the demand for labor market opportunities for women, potentially helping to stem India's declining female labor force participation rate.
    Keywords: Population Policies,Gender and Development,Labor Markets,Gender and Law,Gender and Health
    Date: 2013–10–01
  4. By: Paolo Falco; Luke Haywood
    Abstract: The self-employed constitute a large proportion of the workforce in developing countries and the sector is growing. Different accounts exist as to the causes of this development, with pull factors such as high returns to capital contrasted with push factors such as barriers to more desirable salaried jobs. Using data from Ghana, we investigate the changing structure of earnings in self-employment relative to salaried work. We decompose earnings in a two-sector labour market allowing for flexible patterns of sorting on unobservables by means of a correlated random coefficient model estimated by IV-GMM. A unique panel dataset provides us with suitable instruments to tackle the endogeneity of sector choice and capital accumulation. We show that returns to productive characteristics in SE have increased significantly over the period 2004-11 and the sector has attracted workers with higher skills. We conclude that pull factors have significantly strengthened, pointing against the grim view of self-employment as an occupation of last resort.
    Keywords: : self-employment, semiparametric models, comparative advantage, segmentation, African labour markets
    JEL: O15 J24 J42 C14
    Date: 2013
  5. By: Georges KONE (IRD - Institut de Recherche pour le Développement - Institut de Recherche pour le Développement); Richard Lalou (IRD - Institut de Recherche pour le Développement - Institut de Recherche pour le Développement); Martine Audibert (CERDI - Centre d'études et de recherches sur le developpement international - CNRS : UMR6587 - Université d'Auvergne - Clermont-Ferrand I); Hervé LAFARGE (University Paris Dauphine - University Paris Dauphine - University Paris Dauphine); Stéphanie Dos Santos (IRD - Institut de Recherche pour le Développement - Institut de Recherche pour le Développement); Jean-Yves Le Hesran (IRD - Institut de Recherche pour le Développement - Institut de Recherche pour le Développement)
    Abstract: The aim of this paper is to evaluate the relative influence of neighbourhood and individual practices of care utilization in Dakar (Senegal). The data from a research program on urban malaria, made in Dakar, Senegal between 2008 and 2009. The sample was based on a two-stage sampling. A questionnaire survey covered 2952 households, of which we have selected those that have at least one case of fever (n = 1272) with one of their children under ten years two weeks before the passage of investigators. The analytical model of the use of health services developed by R. Andersen has been adapted for our conceptual framework. Our results showed's like many West African cities, self-medication is a common practice among all households in Dakar, especially the poorest. The non-use of health services is positively associated with individual characteristics such as education level, the level of social network and the level of health literacy of the mother / guardian of the sick child (p
    Keywords: dakar;malaria;access to health care;Poverty;neighborhoods;equity
    Date: 2013–10–31
  6. By: Roodman, David; Morduch, Jonathan
    Abstract: We replicate and reanalyse the most influential study of microcredit impacts (Pitt and Khandker, 1998). That study was celebrated for showing that microcredit reduces poverty, a much hoped-for possibility (though one not confirmed by recent randomized controlled trials). We show that the original results on poverty reduction disappear after dropping outliers, or when using a robust linear estimator. Using a new program for estimation of mixed process maximum likelihood models, we show how assumptions critical for the original analysis, such as error normality, are contradicted by the data. We conclude that questions about impact cannot be answered in these data.
    JEL: C21 C23 C24 C25 O12 O16
    Date: 2013–06
  7. By: Olivier Cadot; Ana Fernandes; Julien Gourdon; Aaditya Mattoo; Jaime de Melo
    Abstract: The paper reviews recent evidence from a wide range of studies, recognizing that a multiplicity of approaches is needed to learn what works and what does not. The review concludes that there is some support for the emphasis on reducing trade costs through investments in hard infrastructure (like ports and roads) and soft infrastructure (like customs). But failure to implement complementary reform – especially the introduction of competition in transport services – may erode the benefits of these investments. Direct support to exporters does seem to lead to diversification across products and destinations, but it is not yet clear that these benefits are durable. In general, it is difficult to rely on cross-country studies to direct AFT. More rigorous impact evaluation (IE) is an under-utilized alternative, but situations of “clinical interventions” in trade are rare and adverse incentives (due to agency problems) and costs (due to the small size of project) are a hurdle in implementation.
    Keywords: Aid for trade (AFT);trade performance;gravity;impact evaluation
    JEL: F15 F35
    Date: 2013–10
  8. By: Laure Pasquier-Doumer (IRD, UMR 225 DIAL); Fiorella Risso Brandon (PSL, Université Paris-Dauphine, LEDa, IRD, UMR 225 DIAL)
    Abstract: (english) This paper aims to contribute to understand the mechanisms underlying the complex exclusion process of indigenous people in Peru, by analysing the role played by aspirations in the investment in education of indigenous children. To address these issues, the paper relies on a very rich data set, the Young Lives data, and use an original instrument that allow to cast light on the causal relation between aspiration and educational outcomes. We find that aspiration failure is a channel of inequality persistence between indigenous and non-indigenous people, but that aspiration failure do not takes the form of a lack of aspiration. Indigenous children do not have internalized racial schemas about occupation or about their opportunities. However, the gap between their aspiration and their current socio-economic status is too large, in so far as it has a disincentive effect on forward-looking behaviour. _________________________________ (français) Ce document vise à mieux comprendre les mécanismes qui sous-tendent le processus d'exclusion des indigènes au Pérou. Nous analysons en particulier le rôle joué par les aspirations des enfants indigènes sur leur investissement scolaire. En utilisant les données des enquêtes Young Lives et en mobilisant un instrument original, cet article permet d’identifier la relation causale entre les aspirations et les résultats scolaires. Nous montrons que les aspirations participent à la persistance des inégalités entre les populations indigènes et non indigènes. Cependant, cette transmission des inégalités ne passe pas par une auto-limitation des aspirations de la part des enfants indigènes, mais plutôt par un écart trop important entre les aspirations des enfants indigènes et leur statut socio-économique. La trop longue distance à parcourir pour combler cet écart a un effet désincitatif sur les efforts fournis par les enfants indigènes à l’école. En revanche, il apparaît que les enfants indigènes n’ont pas intériorisé les valeurs discriminatoires à l’encontre des indigènes dans leur façon de former leurs aspirations.
    Keywords: aspiration, indigenous, educational outcomes, Peru, aspiration, indigènes, résultats scolaires, Pérou.
    JEL: D01 I24 J15 Z13
    Date: 2013–10

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