nep-dev New Economics Papers
on Development
Issue of 2017‒07‒02
six papers chosen by
Jacob A. Jordaan
Universiteit Utrecht

  1. Private Schools and Student Learning Achievements in Kenya By Fredrick M. Wamalwa; Justine Burns
  2. Firewood, smoke and respiratory diseases in developing countries: The neglected role of outdoor cooking By Langbein, Jörg
  3. School Management and Public-Private Partnerships in Uganda By Crawfurd, Lee
  4. Food Price Shocks and Government Expenditure Composition: Evidence from African Countries By Carine MEYIMDJUI
  5. Subsidized antimalarial drugs in Dakar (Senegal): Do the poor benefit? By Georges Karna KONE; Martine AUDIBERT; Richard LALOU; Hervé LAFARGE; Jean-Yves LE HESRAN
  6. The role of land certification in reducing gaps in productivity between male- and female-owned farms in rural Ethiopia By Mintewab Bezabih; Stein Holden; Andrea Mannberg

  1. By: Fredrick M. Wamalwa; Justine Burns
    Abstract: This papers examines the effect of private schools on literacy and numeracy skill acquisition among children mainly drawn from lower primary grades in Kenya. We apply a number of estimation approaches that accounts for endogeneity of school choice. We begin with the OLS, as a baseline model. We then estimate the household fxed effects (FE) model to control for unobservables at the household level. We supplement the OLS and FE models with the propensity score matching (PSM) technique. We find a significant private school advantage throughout these methodologies. However, assessing the impact of omitted variable bias (OVB) on the estimated coefficient of private school effect, we find that the bias in the household FE is quite small in magnitude relative to other estimation techniques. Sinc private schooling decision is made at the household level, it is likely that a substantial part of the unobservable component is pertaining to the household.
    Keywords: Private schools, household fixed effects, Kenya
    JEL: I21 P46 C21
    Date: 2017–06
  2. By: Langbein, Jörg
    Abstract: Smoke from cooking in the kitchen is one of the world's leading causes of premature child death, claiming the lives of 500,000 children under five annually. This study analyses the role of outdoor cooking and the prevalence of respiratory diseases among children under five years by means of probit regressions using information from 41 surveys conducted in 30 developing countries from Asia, Africa and Latin America. I find that outdoor cooking reduces respiratory diseases among young children aged 0-4 by around 9 percent, an effect that reaches 13 percent among children aged 0-1. The results suggest that simple behavioral interventions, such as promoting outdoor cooking, can have a substantial impact on health hazards.
    Keywords: air pollution,health behavior,energy access
    JEL: Q53 I12 O13
    Date: 2017
  3. By: Crawfurd, Lee
    Abstract: Can the quality of school management explain differences in student test scores? In this paper I present the first internationally benchmarked estimates of school management quality in Africa (based on the “World Management Survey”). The level and distribution of management quality is similar to that found in other low and middle- income countries (India and Brazil). I combine this data with individual student panel data, and demonstrate that differences in school management quality matter for student value-added - a standard deviation difference in management is associated with a 0.06 standard deviation difference in test scores. Finally I contribute to understanding the role of the private sector in education in a low-income setting. Contrary to common perception, I find no difference between the quality of school management in government, private, or public-private partnership (PPP) schools (despite the higher level of autonomy available to them). An exception is an internationally-owned chain of PPP schools, which are as well managed as schools in the UK.
    Keywords: Education, Management, School Quality, Uganda, Private Schools, Public-Private Partnerships, NGO
    JEL: I25 I28 L33 M50 O15
    Date: 2017
  4. By: Carine MEYIMDJUI
    Abstract: The delicacy of socio-political consequences during the recent commodities’ prices spikes has given rise to stabilising measures that might have had repercussions on public policy alternatives. This effect may be worrying for developing countries, which because of the importance of the share of imports in their households’ basket, have observed a remarkable increase of their food import bills. This paper attempts to evaluate the effect of food price shocks on public expenditure in level and composition on 47 African countries between 1980 and 2011. After solving for endogeneity issues, our results show that food price shocks positively and significantly affect total government expenditure and the share of current government consumption in the total government expenditure. More precisely, an additional one standard deviation of the food price shock increase is associated to an increase of 0.06 standard deviation of the percentage of current government consumption in the total government expenditure. Interestingly, this effect highly depends on the vulnerability level. Future studies will use more disaggregated data of fiscal variables, including those on revenue, to better assess food security policies.
    Keywords: Expenditure composition, Price shock, Africa.
    JEL: Q11 N57 H50
    Date: 2017–02
  5. By: Georges Karna KONE; Martine AUDIBERT (Centre d'Etudes et de Recherches sur le Développement International(CERDI)); Richard LALOU; Hervé LAFARGE; Jean-Yves LE HESRAN
    Abstract: Senegal opted for an antimalarial drug policy (artemisinin-based combination therapy) of partial and then full exemption from health care costs for the whole population respectively in 2008 and 2010. Has this policy reduced access inequalities in children’s health care between rich and poor households? Data were collected in Dakar between 2008 and 2009 as part of a research program on urban malaria. A survey was conducted among the population of the Dakar metropolitan area. The sample was based on a two-stage sampling. The three questionnaires used for the survey were based on validated data collection tools. Indicators were built to characterize individuals, households and neighborhoods. Bivariate analysis (chi2 test) revealed social gradients within the Dakar agglomeration and characterized health care behaviors of the poorest and richest households. Data have therefore been adjusted by a double zero-inflated Poisson model. Results show that the policy of subsidizing antimalarial drugs in Senegal has reduced health care costs, including for the poor, but without improving its distributive equity. In contrast, this policy has benefited more the richest than the poorest, without mitigating social and financial inequalities. In light of the lessons learnt by the subsidy policy for antimalarial drugs, our study recommends that universal health coverage, currently implemented in Senegal, should seek to mitigate economic inequalities in access to health care for the poorest as well as to improve the health outcomes for the whole population.
    Keywords: Poverty, Universal health coverage, Health financing, Urban area, Dakar.
    JEL: I18 I14
    Date: 2017–06
  6. By: Mintewab Bezabih; Stein Holden; Andrea Mannberg
    Abstract: This paper analyses the impact of a low-cost land certification programme on the productivity of female-headed households. The hypotheses tested in the paper emphasise on the interaction between the constraints that female-headed households face in terms of insecure land tenure, lack of productive resources and suboptimal land market participation, on the one hand, and the tenure security benefits of certification on the other. Our findings show that land certification has a positive effect on land market participation and productivity. Our analysis also suggests higher marginal effects of certification on female-headed households’ productivity, compared to the male ones.
    JEL: J1 Q15
    Date: 2016–04–25

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