nep-dev New Economics Papers
on Development
Issue of 2017‒03‒26
fourteen papers chosen by
Jacob A. Jordaan
Universiteit Utrecht

  1. Exposing corruption: Can electoral competition discipline politicians? By Afridi, Farzana; Dhillon, Amrita; Solan, Eilon
  2. Accidents caused by kerosene lamps: New evidence from African household data By Lenz, Luciane; Montenbruck, Laura; Sievert, Maximiliane
  3. Women in Parliaments and Aid effectiveness in Sub-Saharan African countries By Maria Rosaria Carillo; Valentina Chiariello; Rita De Siano
  4. From corn to popcorn? Urbanization and food consumption in sub-saharan Africa: evidence from rural-urban migrants in Tanzania By Lara Cockx; Liesbeth Colen; Joachim De Weerdt
  5. Women’s Empowerment among the Extremely Poor: Evidence from the Impact Evaluation of Red UNIDOS in Colombia By Susana Martínez-Restrepo; Johanna Yancari; Laura Ramos Jaimes
  6. Social Determinants of Health Inequalities in South Africa: A Decomposition Analysis By Kehinde O. Omotoso; Steven F. Koch
  7. Linking risk aversion, time preference and fertilizer use in Burkina Faso By Tristan Le Cotty; Elodie Maitre d'Hotel; Raphael Soubeyran; Julie Subervie
  8. Land Reform, Property Rights and Private Investment: Evidence from a Planned Settlement in Rural Tanzania By Francis Makamu; Harounan Kazianga
  9. Poor Health Reporting? Using Vignettes to Recover the Health Gradient by Wealth By Laura Rossouw; Teresa Bago d'Uva; Eddy van Doorslaer
  10. Minimum wage impacts on wages and hours worked of low-income workers in Ecuador By Sara Wong
  11. Distributive Implications of Fertility Changes in Latin America By Nicolas Badaracco; Leonardo Gasparini; Mariana Marchionni
  12. The Labour Productivity Gap between agricultural and non-agricultural sectors and Poverty in Asia By Katsushi S. Imai; Raghav Gaiha; Fabrizio Bresciani
  13. Outdoor cooking prevalence in developing countries and its implication for clean cooking policies By Langbein, Jörg; Peters, Jörg; Vance, Colin
  14. The Determinants of Child Health Disparities in Jordan By Caroline Krafft

  1. By: Afridi, Farzana (Economics and Planning Unit, Indian Statistical Institute, Delhi and IZA, Bonn); Dhillon, Amrita (Department of Political Economy, Kings College, London, and CAGE, University of Warwick.); Solan, Eilon (School of Mathematical Sciences, Tel Aviv University)
    Abstract: In developing countries with weak institutions, there is implicitly a large reliance on elections to instil norms of accountability and reduce corruption. In this paper we show that electoral discipline may be ineffective in reducing corruption when political competition is too high or too low. We first build a simple game theoretic model to capture the effect of electoral competition on corruption. We show that in equilibrium, corruption has a U-shaped relationship with electoral competition. If the election is safe for the incumbent (low competition) or if it is extremely fragile (high competition) then corruption is higher, and for intermediate levels of competition, corruption is lower. We also predict that when there are different types of corruption, then incumbents increase corruption in the components that voters care less about regardless of competition. We test the model’s predictions using data gathered on audit findings of leakages from a large public program in Indian villages belonging to the state of Andhra Pradesh during 2006-10 and on elections to the village council headship in 2006. Our results largely confirm the theoretical results that competition has a non-linear effect on corruption, and that the impact of electoral competition varies by whether theft is from the public or private component of the service delivery. Overall, our results suggest that over-reliance on elections to discipline politicians is misplaced.
    Keywords: Corruption, Electoral Competition, Audit, Social Acountability. JEL Classification: D72, D82, H75, O43, C72
    Date: 2016
  2. By: Lenz, Luciane; Montenbruck, Laura; Sievert, Maximiliane
    Abstract: The use of kerosene for lighting, cooking, and heating in developing countries is often considered a major health threat as it can cause accidents like thermal injuries, poisonings, fires or explosions. A number of hospital surveys emphasize this threat but evidence from household data is extremely scarce and mostly outdated. The present paper is one of the first to investigate the link between kerosene-based lighting and accidents at the household level. We use survey data from 3,326 non-electrified households in Burkina Faso, Rwanda, Senegal, and Zambia and observe very heterogeneous kerosene lamp usage rates. In some regions, accidents with kerosene lamps occur in a substantial share of the population, but the absolute incidence is rather low.
    Keywords: burns,thermal injury,kerosene lamp,traditional lighting,Sub-Sahara Africa
    JEL: I15 K32 O13
    Date: 2017
  3. By: Maria Rosaria Carillo; Valentina Chiariello; Rita De Siano (-)
    Abstract: This study fits into the research field of Aid and Growth, seeking to evaluate whether the gender composition of Parliaments in recipient countries may have any impact on aid effectiveness. By using data from the World Bank and OECD (CRS) databases, the analysis refers to 46 Sub-Saharan African countries over the period 1995-2012. The analysis reveals that the presence of women in parliament reduces this negative effect of aid on growth. The results are robust when controlling for endogeneity problems that may affect the linkages between Aid and Growth and for the inclusion of some crucial control for political factors.
    Keywords: Economic growth, Foreign Aid, Gender, Developing Countries, Institutions
    JEL: F35 J16 O1 O43
    Date: 2016–11–05
  4. By: Lara Cockx; Liesbeth Colen; Joachim De Weerdt
    Abstract: There is rising concern that the ongoing wave of urbanization will have profound effects on eating patterns and increase the risk of nutrition-related non-communicable diseases. Yet, our understanding of urbanization as a driver of food consumption remains limited and primarily based upon research designs that fail to disentangle the effect of living in an urban environment from other socioeconomic disparities. Data from the Tanzania National Panel Survey, which tracked out-migrating respondents, allow us to compare individuals’ dietary patterns before and after they relocated from rural to urban areas and assess whether those changes differ from household members who stayed behind or moved to a different rural area. We find that individuals who relocated to urban areas experience a much more pronounced shift away from the consumption of traditional staples, and towards more high-sugar, conveniently consumed and prepared foods. Contrary to what is often claimed in the literature, living in an urban environment is not found to contribute positively to the intake of protein-rich foods, nor to diet diversity. Though we do not find a strong association with weight gain, these changes in eating patterns represent a clear nutritional concern regarding the potential longer-term impacts of urbanization. Our results however also indicate that the growth of unhealthy food consumption with urbanization is largely linked to rising incomes. As such, health concerns over diets can be expected to spread rapidly to less-urbanized areas as well, as soon as income growth takes off there. Our findings clearly call for more in-depth research that may help to improve health and food and nutrition security as well as correctly predict food demand and adapt trade, agricultural and development policies.
    Date: 2017–03
  5. By: Susana Martínez-Restrepo; Johanna Yancari; Laura Ramos Jaimes
    Abstract: Currently, 9.1 per cent of Colombia’s population lives in extreme poverty. Poverty is more prevalent in rural areas, where it reaches 19.1 per cent (DANE 2012). In Colombia women are more affected by extreme poverty than men, which can be explained by gender gaps in the labour market. While female labour force participation in urban areas is 57.8 per cent, male labour force participation is almost 17 percentage points higher at 74.5 per cent. Among the extremely poor population, only 31.9 per cent of women in urban areas participate in the labour market. Job informality among extremely poor women can reach as high as 90 per cent (DANE 2013). How then can we help women living in extreme poverty achieve greater economic empowerment? A diagnostic study revealed that the most vulnerable population was not benefiting from government services created to improve their socio-economic conditions. This was due to a lack of information, a lack of identification and a lack of empowerment, as well as distance to the supply of services (Nunez and Cuesta 2006). Furthermore, evidence from Chile Solidario also suggests that extremely poor families lack the fundamental organisational skills for their own development; therefore, more than financial support, they also need psychosocial support (Galasso 2011). Armed with this evidence, Colombia created Red UNIDOS (previously Red JUNTOS) in 2009 as the government strategy to alleviate extreme poverty.
    Keywords: Mujeres Desplazadas y en Extrema Pobreza, Pobreza, Mujeres, Mercado de Trabajo, Protección Social, Red UNIDOS, Extrema Pobreza, Colombia
    JEL: D12 J30 J46 I32 I38
    Date: 2015–09–30
  6. By: Kehinde O. Omotoso (Department of Economics, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, South Africa); Steven F. Koch (Department of Economics, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, South Africa)
    Abstract: This study uses information collected on social determinants of health (SDH) and on a variety of health indicators in the 2004 and 2014 questionnaires of the South African General Household Surveys (GHSs) to explain how changes in the SDH have impacted health inequalities over the last decade, the second since the end of Apartheid. Specifically, the Oaxaca-type decomposition of change in a concentration index is used to illustrate how changes in health inequalities over time are attributable to changes in inequality in the determinants of health, and changes in their elasticities. This study finds that rising inequalities in ill-health are largely explained by widening inequalities among those residing in the urban areas and in the relatively richer provinces. Meanwhile, rising inequality in medical aid coverage and utilisation of private health care are mainly attributable to inequalities in educational attainment and racial composition. However, changing elasticities in SDH, rather than rising inequalities, are found to be important factors in explaining inequality in the utilisation of public health care.
    Date: 2017–03
  7. By: Tristan Le Cotty (CIRED - Centre International de Recherche sur l'Environnement et le Développement - CIRAD - Centre de Coopération Internationale en Recherche Agronomique pour le Développement - EHESS - École des hautes études en sciences sociales - AgroParisTech - ENPC - École des Ponts ParisTech - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique); Elodie Maitre d'Hotel (UMR MOISA - Marchés, Organisations, Institutions et Stratégies d'Acteurs - CIRAD - Centre de Coopération Internationale en Recherche Agronomique pour le Développement - Montpellier SupAgro - Centre international d'études supérieures en sciences agronomiques - INRA Montpellier - Institut national de la recherche agronomique [Montpellier] - CIHEAM - Centre International des Hautes Études Agronomiques Méditerranéennes, CIRAD - Centre de Coopération Internationale en Recherche Agronomique pour le Développement); Raphael Soubeyran (LAMETA - Laboratoire Montpelliérain d'Économie Théorique et Appliquée - UM3 - Université Paul-Valéry - Montpellier 3 - Montpellier SupAgro - Centre international d'études supérieures en sciences agronomiques - INRA Montpellier - Institut national de la recherche agronomique [Montpellier] - UM - Université de Montpellier - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique); Julie Subervie (LAMETA - Laboratoire Montpelliérain d'Économie Théorique et Appliquée - UM3 - Université Paul-Valéry - Montpellier 3 - Montpellier SupAgro - Centre international d'études supérieures en sciences agronomiques - INRA Montpellier - Institut national de la recherche agronomique [Montpellier] - UM - Université de Montpellier - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)
    Abstract: This paper investigates whether Burkinabe maize farmers’ fertilizer-use decisionsare correlated with their risk and time preferences. We conducted a survey and a se-ries of hypothetical experiments on a sample of 1,500 farmers. We find that morepatient farmers do use more fertilizer, but it is only because they plant more maize (afertilizer-intensive crop) rather than because they use more fertilizer per hectare ofmaize planted. Conversely, we find no statistically significant link between risk aver-sion and fertilizer use. We use a simple two-period model, which suggests that riskaversion may indeed have an ambiguous effect on fertilizer use.
    Keywords: agriculture,risk aversion,time preferences,agricultural price,western africa,fertilizer,aversion au risque,prix agricole,burkina faso,afrique occidentale,engrais
    Date: 2017
  8. By: Francis Makamu (Oklahoma State University); Harounan Kazianga (Oklahoma State University)
    Abstract: We investigate the mass resettlement of rural population in Tanzania that occurred in early 1970s. The policy was implemented to strengthen the role of the state in establishing villages for communal production and development. The villagisation process that followed was implemented with unclear goals, haste and at some point coercion that it was unlikely to bring any short-term improvement in the rural economy. We exploit a recent survey data to examine the impact of the ujamaa operation on farming activities. Our findings show that areas affected by the villagisation in which proprietary rights in land were given to households had significantly better transferability rights and had made significant investments in land. We detect improvement in access to rural credit market and a closing gender gap in land ownership.
    Keywords: Property rights, Land tenure, Land redistribution, Villagisation, Tanzania
    Date: 2017–03
  9. By: Laura Rossouw (Stellenbosch University, South Africa); Teresa Bago d'Uva (Erasmus University Rotterdam, The Netherlands); Eddy van Doorslaer (Erasmus University Rotterdam, The Netherlands, and Stellenbosch University, South Africa)
    Abstract: In spite of the well-known wide disparities in wealth and in objective measures of health like mortality in countries like South Africa, health inequality by wealth in self-reported health measures appears to be nearly non-existent. We test and correct for reporting heterogeneity in sixteen domains of self-assessed health by wealth and race among elderly South Africans using anchoring vignettes. We find that significant reporting differences between high and low wealth groups lead to severe underestimation of the health-wealth gap: poorer individuals rate the same health relatively higher than richer. Using hierarchical ordered probit (HOPIT) modeling, we show that a significant and substantial health disadvantage of the poor emerges after correction. We also address the question whether and how health inequality and reporting heterogeneity are confounded by race. We find that within race groups - especially among Blacks but also among Whites - reporting heterogeneity leads to the underestimation of the health inequalities between richest and poorest. Finally, we show that the apparent Black (vs White) health disadvantage within the top wealth quintile disappears once we correct for reporting tendencies. All in all, our findings suggest that reporting tendencies are an important source of bias in the measurement of health disparities and that anchoring vignettes and HOPIT models can play a role in correcting for these biases.
    Keywords: self-assessed health; vignettes; health measurement; inequality; South Africa
    JEL: D30 D31 I10 I14
    Date: 2017–03–14
  10. By: Sara Wong
    Abstract: The minimum wage policy in Ecuador aims to raise the real income of low-wage workers. We analyze the effects of the January 2012 increase in minimum wages on wages and hours worked of low-wage workers. Individuals may select themselves into the occupations of the groups of workers who are covered by the minimum wage legislation, or into those who are not. We apply a difference-in-differences estimation as an identification strategy to account for selection on unobservables. We construct individual panel data from a household panel. The main results suggest a significant and positive effect of the minimum wage increase on the wages of affected workers, increasing their wages by 0.41% to 0.48% for each 1% increase in minimum wages, relative to the earnings of unaffected workers. Results from hours worked highlight several variables that should be accounted for to find significant and sensible estimations that differentiate between full time work and other heterogeneous effects on the treated group.
    JEL: J21 J23 J38
    Date: 2017
  11. By: Nicolas Badaracco (CEDLAS - UNLP); Leonardo Gasparini (CEDLAS - UNLP); Mariana Marchionni (CEDLAS - UNLP)
    Abstract: Fertility rates significantly fell over the last decades in Latin America. In order to assess the extent to which these changes contributed to the observed reduction in income poverty and inequality we apply microeconometric decompositions to microdata from national household surveys from seven Latin American countries. We find that changes in fertility rates were associated to a non-negligible reduction in inequality and poverty in the region. The main channel was straightforward: lower fertility implied smaller families and hence larger per capita incomes. Lower fertility also fostered labor force participation, especially among women, which contributed to the reduction of poverty and inequality in most countries, although the size of this effect was smaller.
    JEL: J2 J1
    Date: 2017–01
  12. By: Katsushi S. Imai (Research Institute for Economics & Business Administration (RIEB), Kobe University, Japan and School of Social Sciences, University of Manchester, UK); Raghav Gaiha (Harvard School of Public Health, Harvard University Boston, USA); Fabrizio Bresciani (Asia and the Pacific Division of International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), Italy)
    Abstract: This paper has first examined whether the labour productivities in agricultural and non-agricultural sectors have converged or not using both annual and five-year average panel datasets. We have found evidence that non-agricultural labour productivity and agricultural labour productivity did not converge as the former has grown faster and the gap has increased significantly over time. We have then found that (i) agricultural labour productivity has converged across countries; (ii) non-agricultural labour productivity has converged across countries; and (iii) the convergence effect is stronger for the non-agricultural sector. We have also found some evidence that agricultural labour productivity growth promoted non-agricultural productivity growth with some lag. That is, despite the lower growth in agricultural labour productivity, the agricultural sector played an important role in promoting non-agricultural labour productivity and thus in non-agricultural growth. Finally, we have examined whether the labour productivity gap between the agricultural and the non-agricultural sectors reduced poverty, inequality and the share of the sectoral population over time. While the result varies depending on the specification, we have found some evidence that the labour productivity gap reduces both urban and rural poverty over time as well as the national inequality. The gap also is found to increase the share of the urban population.
    Date: 2017–03
  13. By: Langbein, Jörg; Peters, Jörg; Vance, Colin
    Abstract: More than 3 billion people use wood fuels for their daily cooking needs, with detrimental health implications related to smoke emissions. Global initiatives to disseminate clean cooking stoves emphasize technologies that are either expensive, such as electricity and gasifier stoves, or for which supply chains hardly reach rural areas, such as LPG. This emphasis neglects that many households in the developing world cook outdoors. Our calculations demonstrate that for such households, already the use of less expensive biomass cooking stoves can substantially reduce smoke exposure. The costeffectiveness of clean cooking policies can thus be improved by taking cooking location and ventilation into account.
    Keywords: air pollution,health behavior,energy access
    JEL: Q53 I12 O13
    Date: 2017
  14. By: Caroline Krafft (University of Minnesota)
    Abstract: The first few years of children’s lives provide a crucial window for their human development. Malnutrition, as a form of faltering development in the early years of life, has lasting consequences in terms of education, labor market, and adult health outcomes. Early childhood is also the period when inequality originates and the intergenerational transmission of poverty and inequality begins. It is therefore important to identify the causes of poor health in early childhood and to understand what drives inequality in early health and nutrition in order to provide children with equal chances for healthy growth. In Jordan, there are substantial socio-economic disparities in children’s health and nutrition. This paper examines the determinants and mediators of health disparities in children’s height and weight in Jordan, focusing on factors that might mediate socio-economic disparities, including parental health knowledge, food quantity and quality, health conditions, the health environment, and prenatal development. While this paper demonstrates that the health environment and food quantity and quality contribute to inequality in child health, these effects mediate only a small share of socio-economic disparities. A large share of inequality in children’s health is determined prenatally, for instance through disparities in fetal growth.
    Date: 2015–09

This nep-dev issue is ©2017 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.