nep-dev New Economics Papers
on Development
Issue of 2013‒11‒22
nine papers chosen by
Jacob A. Jordaan
Utrecht University

  1. A randomized, controlled study of a rural sanitation behavior change program in Madhya Pradesh, India By Patil, Sumeet R.; Arnold, Benjamin F.; Salvatore, Alicia; Briceno, Bertha; Colford, Jr., John M.; Gertler, Paul J.
  2. Climate Variability, Child Labour and Schooling: Evidence on the Intensive and Extensive Margin By Jonathan Colmer
  3. Does malaria control impact education? A study of the Global Fund in Africa By Maria Kuecken; Josselin Thuilliez; Marie-Anne Valfort
  4. Girl power in agricultural production: how much does it yield? A case-study on the dairy sector in India. By Sneyers, Astrid; Vandeplas, Anneleen
  5. Internet adoption and usage patterns in Africa: Evidence from Cameroon By PENARD Thierry; POUSSING Nicolas; MUKOKO Blaise; TAMOKWE Georges Bertrand
  6. Understanding the adaptation deficit: why are poor countries more vulnerable to climate events than rich countries? By Samuel Fankhauser; Thomas K.J. McDermott
  7. Women political leaders, corruption and learning: Evidence from a large public program in India By Farzana Afridi; Vegard Iversen; M.R. Sharan
  8. Incentives for Teacher Relocation: Evidence from the Gambian Hardship Allowance By Pugatch, Todd; Schroeder, Elizabeth
  9. Female labor force participation and child education in India: The Effect of the National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme By Farzana Afridi; Abhiroop Mukhopadhyay; Soham Sahoo

  1. By: Patil, Sumeet R.; Arnold, Benjamin F.; Salvatore, Alicia; Briceno, Bertha; Colford, Jr., John M.; Gertler, Paul J.
    Abstract: Poor sanitation and open defecation are thought to be a major cause of diarrhea and intestinal parasite infections among young children. In 1999, India launched the Total Sanitation Campaign with the goal of achieving universal toilet coverage in rural India by 2012. This paper reports on a cluster-randomized, controlled trial that was conducted in 80 rural villages in Madhya Pradesh to measure the effect of the program on toilet access, sanitation behavior, and child health outcomes. The study analyzed a random sample of 3,039 households and 5,206 children under five years of age. Field staff collected baseline measures of sanitation conditions, behavior, and child health, and re-visited households 21 months later. The analysis finds that implementation of the program activities was slower than the original timeline (only 35 percent of villages were triggered more than six months before the follow-up survey). Nevertheless, the Total Sanitation Campaign successfully increased toilet coverage by 19 percent in intervention villages compared with control villages (41 percent v. 22 percent), while reported open defecation decreased by 10 percent among adults (74 percent v. 84 percent). The intervention also led to some improvements in water quality and protozoan infection, but consistent improvements were not observed across multiple child health outcomes (diarrhea, helminth infections, child growth). However, the exposure period was likely to have been too short to result in any benefit of the sanitation interventions on child health. Given the large improvements in toilet construction documented, an additional follow-up survey with a longer period of exposure would yield valuable information on the effects of improved sanitation conditions on health outcomes.
    Keywords: Health Monitoring&Evaluation,Housing&Human Habitats,Hygiene Promotion and Social Marketing,Urban Water Supply and Sanitation,Town Water Supply and Sanitation
    Date: 2013–11–01
  2. By: Jonathan Colmer
    Abstract: How does future income uncertainty affect child labour and human capital accumulation? Using a unique panel dataset, we examine the effect of changes in climate variability on the allocation of time among child labour activities(the intensive margin) as well as participation in education and labour activities (the extensive margin). We find robust evidence that increased climate variability increases the number of hours spent on farming activities while reducing the number of hours spent on domestic chores, indicating a substitution of time across child labour activities. In addition, we find no evidence of climate variability on enrolment decisions or educational outcomes, suggesting that households may spread the burden of labour across children to minimise its impact on formal education.
    Date: 2013–09
  3. By: Maria Kuecken (CES - Centre d'économie de la Sorbonne - CNRS : UMR8174 - Université Paris I - Panthéon-Sorbonne); Josselin Thuilliez (CES - Centre d'économie de la Sorbonne - CNRS : UMR8174 - Université Paris I - Panthéon-Sorbonne); Marie-Anne Valfort (CES - Centre d'économie de la Sorbonne - CNRS : UMR8174 - Université Paris I - Panthéon-Sorbonne, EEP-PSE - Ecole d'Économie de Paris - Paris School of Economics - Ecole d'Économie de Paris)
    Abstract: We examine the middle-run effects of the Global Fund's malaria control programs on the educational attainment of primary schoolchildren in Sub-Saharan Africa. Using a quasi-experimental approach, we exploit geographic variation in pre-campaign malaria prevalence (malaria ecology) and variation in exogenous exposure to the timing and expenditure of malaria control campaigns, based on individuals' years of birth and year surveyed. In a large majority of countries (14 of 22), we find that the program led to substantial increases in years of schooling and grade level as well as reductions in schooling delay. Moreover, although by and large positive, we find that the marginal returns of the Global Fund disbursements in terms of educational outcomes are decreasing. Our findings, which are robust to both the instrumentation of ecology and use of alternative ecology measures, have important policy implications on the value for money of malaria control efforts.
    Keywords: Malaria; Sub-Saharan Africa; education; quasi-experimental; Global Fund
    Date: 2013–10
  4. By: Sneyers, Astrid; Vandeplas, Anneleen
    Abstract: It is often argued that women have an important role to play in fostering sustainable and inclusive development. Several empirical studies indeed find a correlation between intra-household bargaining power and spending on children’s nutrition, health and education. The general perception of the impact of gender on agricultural productivity is far less favorable. As a result of constrained access to input markets, output markets, and land markets, female-headed households are usually found to be less productive in agriculture than male-headed households. This paper provides empirical evidence of the impact of female intra-household decision-making power on dairy productivity in India, based on evidence from a household-level dataset which was collected in 2008 in 50 villages spread over 5 districts in Andhra Pradesh, a state in the South of India. The results of our analysis suggest that equal, if not higher, productivity is achieved in households where a woman, rather than a man, is the primary decision-maker over production-related decisions. While caution is due in drawing overly strong conclusions, and more research is needed to corroborate these findings, our results provide a more nuanced view on the impact of gender on agricultural productivity than the one which is usually put forward in the literature.
    Keywords: agricultural productivity; dairy sector; gender; female decision-making power;
    Date: 2013–09
  5. By: PENARD Thierry; POUSSING Nicolas; MUKOKO Blaise; TAMOKWE Georges Bertrand
    Abstract: The objective of this paper is to understand what factors stimulate or hinder the adoption and usage of the Internet in Africa. We adopt a micro-econometric approach and use household survey data from Cameroon. Our results show that Internet users in Cameroon tend to be young, educated and in employment. The probability of using the Internet is also higher for male, as well as for English-speaking and computer savvy individuals. Moreover, Internet users are more likely to have family abroad. We also find that Internet usage patterns differ across gender, age and education. For instance, young generations (below 21) tend to favor leisure usage (games) while older generations are more likely to use the Internet to search (local and international) information. Highly educated and computer savvy users are also more likely to use the Internet for professional purpose (information search) and less likely to have entertainment usage. These results provide evidence of digital divide in the Internet access, but also in the usage patterns on the African continent.
    Keywords: Internet adoption; Internet usage; Digital divide; Africa; Survey data; Empirical analysis
    JEL: L86 L96 O33 O57
    Date: 2013–11
  6. By: Samuel Fankhauser; Thomas K.J. McDermott
    Abstract: Poor countries are more heavily affected by extreme weather events and future climate change than rich countries. This discrepancy is sometimes known as an adaptation deficit. This paper analyses the link between income and adaptation to climate events theoretically and empirically. We postulate that the adaptation deficit is due to two factors: A demand effect, whereby the demand for the good “climate security” increases with income, and an efficiency effect, which works as a spill-over externality on the supply-side: Adaptation productivity in high-income countries is enhanced because of factors like better infrastructure and stronger institutions. Using panel data from the Munich Re natural catastrophe database we find evidence for both effects in two climate-related extreme events: tropical cyclones and floods. The demand effect is uniformly strong, but there is considerable variation in adaptation efficiency. We identify the countries where inefficiencies are largest. Lower adaptation efficiency is associated in particular with less government spending, an uneven income distribution and bad governance. The conclusion for policy is that international efforts to close the adaptation deficit have to include both inclusive growth policies (which boost adaptation demand) and dedicated adaptation support (which enhances spill-overs), the latter targeted at the countries with the highest adaptation inefficiencies.
    Date: 2013–09
  7. By: Farzana Afridi (Indian Statistical Institute, New Delhi); Vegard Iversen (Institute for Development Policy and Management, University of Manchester); M.R. Sharan (Jameel Poverty Action Lab, South Asia)
    Abstract: We use the nation-wide policy of randomly allocating village council headships to women to identify the impact of female political leadership on the governance of projects implemented under the National Rural Employment Guarantee Act in India. Using primary survey data, we find more program inefficiencies and leakages in village councils reserved for women heads: political and administrative inexperience make such councils more vulnerable to bureaucratic capture. When using a panel of audit reports, governance improves as female leaders accumulate experience. These results suggest that female political leadership may generate gains in governance but only after the initial, gendered disadvantages recede. Our findings highlight capacity building as necessary for bolstering the effectiveness of political quotas for women.
    Keywords: political reservations, gender, NREGA, India
    JEL: P26 I38
    Date: 2013–01
  8. By: Pugatch, Todd (Oregon State University); Schroeder, Elizabeth (Oregon State University)
    Abstract: We evaluate the impact of the Gambian hardship allowance, which provides a salary premium of 30-40% to primary school teachers in remote locations, on the distribution and characteristics of teachers across schools. A geographic discontinuity in the policy's implementation and the presence of common pre-treatment trends between hardship and non-hardship schools provide sources of identifying variation. We find that the hardship allowance increased the share of qualified (certified) teachers by 10 percentage points. The policy also reduced the pupil-qualified teacher ratio by 27, or 61% of the mean, in recipient schools close to the distance threshold. Further analysis suggests that these gains were not merely the result of teachers switching from non-hardship to hardship schools. With similar policies in place in more than two dozen other developing countries, our study provides an important piece of evidence on their effectiveness.
    Keywords: teacher labor markets, rural schools, Gambia, program evaluation, regression discontinuity
    JEL: I25 I28 J38 J45 J61 O12 O15
    Date: 2013–11
  9. By: Farzana Afridi (Indian Statistical Institute, New Delhi); Abhiroop Mukhopadhyay (Indian Statistical Institute, New Delhi); Soham Sahoo (Indian Statistical Institute, New Delhi)
    Abstract: The National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (NREGS) of India mandates 1/3rd of beneficiaries to be women and equal wages across gender. We study its impact on children's educational attainment via women's increased access to labor market opportunities. Using child level panel data, and taking advantage of the temporal, subdistrict level variation in the intensity of implementation of the NREGS, we find that a rise in mother's share in parental NREGS workdays increases school attendance and grade attainment of her children, particularly girls. This impact is over and above any income effect induced by the scheme.
    Keywords: labor, education, gender, bargaining
    JEL: I21 I38 J16
    Date: 2013–01

This nep-dev issue is ©2013 by Jacob A. Jordaan. 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.
General information on the NEP project can be found at For comments please write to the director of NEP, Marco Novarese at <>. Put “NEP” in the subject, otherwise your mail may be rejected.
NEP’s infrastructure is sponsored by the School of Economics and Finance of Massey University in New Zealand.