nep-dev New Economics Papers
on Development
Issue of 2017‒09‒10
fourteen papers chosen by
Jacob A. Jordaan
Universiteit Utrecht

  1. Up in Smoke: The Influence of Household Behavior on the Long-Run Impact of Improved Cooking Stoves By Esther Duflo; Michael Greenstone; Rema Hanna
  2. Inequality, Crime, and the Long Run Legacy of Slavery By Buonnano, Paolo; Vargas, Juan F.
  3. Can Land Fragmentation Reduce the Exposure of Rural Households to Weather Variability? By Stefanija Veljanoska
  4. Education, social capital and political participation Evidence from school construction in Malian villages By Pierre André; Paul Maarek
  5. Integrating Early-life Shocks and Human Capital Investments on Children´s Education By Duque, Valentina; Rosales-Rueda, María; Sánchez, Fabio
  6. Are free land arrangement really free? An exploration into land arrangements made by rural-urban migrants in the Northeast of Thailand By Gwendoline Promsopha
  7. Rules vs. Discretion in Public Service: Teacher Hiring in Mexico By Estrada, Ricardo
  8. Can household food security predict individual undernutrition? Evidence from Cambodia and Lao PDR By Bühler, Dorothee; Hartje, Rebecca; Ulrike Grote
  9. The Impact of Terrorism on Governance in African Countries By Asongu, Simplice; Nwachukwu, Jacinta C.
  10. Working and Women’s Empowerment in the Egyptian Household: The Type of Work and Location Matter By Clémentine Sadania
  11. Internet and Labor Income: Places and Activities in Colombia By Martin, Diego A.
  12. Return Migrants and the Wage Premium: Does the Legal Status of Migrants Matter? By Jackline Wahba; Nelly El-Mallakh
  13. Identities and Public Policies: Unintended Effects of Political Reservations for Women in India By Guilhem Cassan; Lore Vandewalle
  14. Eco-certified contract choice among coffee farmers in Brazil By Sylvaine Lemeilleur; Julie Subervie; Anderson Edilson Presoto; Roberta De Castro Souza; Maria Sylvia Macchione Saes

  1. By: Esther Duflo; Michael Greenstone; Rema Hanna (Center for International Development at Harvard University)
    Abstract: It is conventional wisdom that it is possible to reduce exposure to indoor air pollution, improve health outcomes, and decrease greenhouse gas emissions in rural areas of developing countries through the adoption of improved cooking stoves. This is largely supported by observational field studies and engineering or laboratory experiments. However, we provide new evidence, from a randomized control trial conducted in rural Orissa, India (one of the poorest places in India) on the benefits of a commonly used improved stove that laboratory tests showed to reduce indoor air pollution and require less fuel. We track households for up to four years after they received the stove. While we find a meaningful reduction in smoke inhalation in the first year, there is no effect over longer time horizons. We find no evidence of improvements in lung functioning or health and there is no change in fuel consumption (and presumably greenhouse gas emissions). The difference between the laboratory and field findings appears to result from households’ revealed low valuation of the stoves. Households failed to use the stoves regularly or appropriately, did not make the necessary investments to maintain them properly, and usage rates ultimately declined further over time. More broadly, this study underscores the need to test environmental and health technologies in real-world settings where behavior may temper impacts, and to test them over a long enough horizon to understand how this behavioral effect evolves over time.
    Keywords: indoor air pollution, human health, climate change, technology adoption
    JEL: O10 O13 O12 Q0 Q23 Q3 Q51 Q53 Q56 I15 I18
    Date: 2017–08
  2. By: Buonnano, Paolo; Vargas, Juan F.
    Abstract: This paper investigates the relationship between economic inequality and crime in Colombian municipalities. Following recent scholarly research that suggests that the legacy of slavery is largely manifest in persistent levels of economic inequality, we instrument economic inequality with a census-based measure of the proportion of slaves in each municipality before the abolition of slavery in the 19 century. We also explore the robustness of our estimates to relaxing the exclusion restriction, as the slavery instrument is only plausibly exogenous. We document a strong association between inequality and both violent and property crime rates at the municipal level. Our estimates are robust to including traditional determinants of crime (like population density, the proportion of young males, the average education level, the quality of law enforcement institutions, and the overall economic activity), as well as current ethnic differences and geographic characteristics that may be correlated both with the slave economy and with crime.
    Keywords: Educación, Economía, Equidad e inclusión social, Investigación socioeconómica, Pobreza, Seguridad,
    Date: 2016
  3. By: Stefanija Veljanoska (Paris School of Economics, UniversitŽ de Paris 1 PanthŽon-Sorbonne, UniversitŽ Paris-Sud)
    Abstract: Climate change continuously affects African farmers that operate in rain-fed environments. Coping with weather risk through credit and insurance markets is almost inexistent as these markets are imperfect in the African economies. Even though land fragmentation is often considered as a barrier to agricultural productivity, this article aims at analyzing whether land fragmentation, as an insurance alternative, is able to reduce farmers' exposure to weather variability. In order to address this research question, I use the Living Standards Measurement Study-Integrated Surveys on Agriculture (LSMS-ISA) data on Uganda. After dealing with the endogeneity of land fragmentation, I find that higher land fragmentation decreases the loss of crop yield when households experience rain deviations. Therefore, policy makers should be cautious with land consolidation programs.
    Keywords: climate change, land fragmentation, rainfall, yield, insurance
    JEL: Q12 Q15 Q54
    Date: 2017–05
  4. By: Pierre André; Paul Maarek (Université de Cergy-Pontoise, THEMA)
    Abstract: Using a nationally representative household survey from Mali with retrospective information on school supply, we estimate the effect of opening new schools on education and on social capital formation. I compare the difference in educational attainment between individuals below and above the age of 9 at a school opening date using a quasi regression discontinuity design. School openings increase school enrollment; they also increase the participation in village associations and the involvement in local political life. The effect on political participation is concentrated in the eldest cohorts of the village with education, aged more than 40; this is not surprising: the eldest occupy a pivotal role in the social life of African villages. Also, the effect of education is concentrated on individuals belonging to a chief family of the village, so education seems to change local political power inside the dominant group of the village.
    Keywords: Education, political participation, school openings, Mali
    Date: 2017
  5. By: Duque, Valentina; Rosales-Rueda, María; Sánchez, Fabio
    Abstract: This study investigates how early-life conditions interact with subsequent human capital investments to influence future educational outcomes. To provide causal evidence, we exploit two sources of exogenous variation: i) variation in early-life environments resulting from a child's exposure to extreme rainfall and drought shocks in early-life; and ii), variation in subsequent investments resulting from the availability of conditional cash transfers (CCT) that promote investments in children's health and education. Using Colombian administrative data, we combine a natural experiment with a regression discontinuity design using the CCT assignment rule. Results show that, although the CCT has an overall positive impact on children's educational outcomes, it does not have a differential effect on children exposed to early-life shocks; however, the overall effect of the program is large enough to mitigate the negative impact of the weather shock. These findings have important policy implications as they provide evidence of the role of social policies in closing gaps generated by early-life trauma.
    Keywords: Desarrollo social, Educación, Equidad e inclusión social, Investigación socioeconómica, Salud, Niñez, Familia,
    Date: 2016
  6. By: Gwendoline Promsopha (LEST - Laboratoire d'économie et de sociologie du travail - AMU - Aix Marseille Université - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)
    Abstract: This paper contributes to an emerging literature on free land arrangements in developing countries. We argue that in-depth empirical analysis is crucial to understand the specific terms of land arrangements. Using mixed quantitative and qualitative data collected among rural-urban migrants in Thailand, we categorize land arrangements along four dimensions: self-reported categories by the actors, the nature of the relationship between the parties involved, the nature of the payment made, and how explicit or binding are the contractual terms. The economic motivations in each of the consequent categories of land arrangement are then analyzed with simple econometrics. Our main results suggest that while free land arrangements are allegedly common practice in Thailand, only a small number of these free arrangements are really free. Many appear to be a `disguised form of rental contract', similar to sharecropping except for the fact that they are reported as free arrangements. Disguised rental is often found among households who rely heavily on the safety net function of land. Or results also suggest that the arrangements which do not involve any direct repayment or compensation are often parts of complex inter-vivo bequests, and involve incomplete transfers of property rights.
    Keywords: Land arrangement, property rights, migration, Thailand, land markets, land title
    Date: 2017
  7. By: Estrada, Ricardo
    Abstract: In this paper, I use a unique empirical setting that allows me to compare the performance of teachers hired in a discretionary process led by the teachers’ union in Mexico with the performance of those hired on the basis of a screening rule (test scores on a standardized exam). My results show that the discretionary hires perform considerably worse than the rulebased hires (as measured by value added to student achievement). The evidence presented here shows the impact of personnel selection mechanisms on the quality of public service delivery.
    Keywords: Educación, Economía, Investigación socioeconómica,
    Date: 2017
  8. By: Bühler, Dorothee; Hartje, Rebecca; Ulrike Grote
    Abstract: This paper uses a novel data set of marginalized households from Cambodia and Lao PDR to better understand different food security concepts. The multitude of indicators available raises the question how these indicators relate to each other and whether they are suitable to detect undernutrition of individuals. In the analysis we identify the causes of food insecurity in relation to a number of different food security concepts and examine the links between the food security status of households and individuals using anthropometric data of children under five. The regression results show that the different indicators of food security at the household level capture fundamentally different aspects of food security. In addition, household food insecurity only explains a small share of child undernutrition. We call for more research on intra-household allocation of food and stress the implications of our research for the design and targeting of food and nutrition support programs.
    Keywords: Food Security, Undernutrition, Human Development, Poverty, Southeast Asia
    JEL: Q18 I15 O15
    Date: 2017–05
  9. By: Asongu, Simplice; Nwachukwu, Jacinta C.
    Abstract: This study investigates how terrorism affects governance in 53 African countries for the period 1998-2012. Four terrorism indicators are used namely: domestic, transnational, unclear and total terrorism. Ten bundled and unbundled governance indicators are also employed namely: political governance (consisting of political stability and voice and accountability), economic governance (encompassing government effectiveness and regulation quality); institutional governance (entailing corruption-control and the rule of law) and general governance. The governance indicators are bundled by means of principal component analysis. The empirical evidence is based on Generalized Method of Moments. Three key findings are established. First, all selected terrorism dynamics negatively affect political governance and its constituents. Second, evidence of a negative relationship is sparingly apparent in economic governance and its components. Third, no proof was confirmed in relation to the impact of terrorism and institutional governance with its elements. Fourth, compared with domestic terrorism, transnational terrorism more negatively and significantly affects political, economic and general governances. Policy implications are discussed.
    Keywords: Terrorism; Governance; Africa
    JEL: C52 D74 F42 O38 P37
    Date: 2017–01
  10. By: Clémentine Sadania (GREQAM - Groupement de Recherche en Économie Quantitative d'Aix-Marseille - EHESS - École des hautes études en sciences sociales - AMU - Aix Marseille Université - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - ECM - Ecole Centrale de Marseille)
    Abstract: This paper explores the impact of women’s work on empowerment in Egypt. Existing evidence suffers from several limitations, which I attempt to address. First, I develop an instrumental variable strategy to account for the endogeneity of work. Second, I allow for a heterogeneous impact of work, distinguishing between working in the public sector, outside work in the private sector and home-based work. Third, women’s empowerment is directly measured as their participation in household decisions. Outside work has the greatest impact. Interestingly, home-based work enhances joint decision-making. Distinguishing between urban and rural residence reveals distinct patterns of impact on decision-making.
    Keywords: women’s empowerment,employment,household decision-making
    Date: 2016–12
  11. By: Martin, Diego A.
    Abstract: Despite the literature in the richest countries about the positive correlation between Internet and income, there is still an open question about the utility of this technology the developing world. This paper uses Propensity Score Matching and includes demographic and industry characteristics, which is the best possible way to control for the productivity of each worker. The matching model meets a broad common support, close gaps between control and treated individual after matching and holding the results for different matching techniques. The results present a positive and statistically significant correlation between Internet and income in Colombia. The key contribution of this paper is to show that the lowest wage premium for using Internet is in the middle of the skill distribution, as in the developed world. Nonetheless, Colombia differs to these countries in the tales of the skill distribution because the highest wage premium is for the lowest skill workers.
    Keywords: Educación, Economía, Internet y banda ancha, Investigación socioeconómica, Trabajo y protección social,
    Date: 2016
  12. By: Jackline Wahba (University of Southampton); Nelly El-Mallakh
    Abstract: This paper examines the long-term impact of the legal status of overseas temporary migrants. Using unique data from Egypt, where we are able to distinguish between return migrants according to their type of international migration, documented versus undocumented migration, we examine the impact of temporary migration on their wages after return. Relying on a recursive mixed process model which takes into account the double selection into temporary migration and into the legal status of migrants, we examine the effect of illegal status on wages upon return. We find that undocumented migrants witness a wage penalty compared to documented migrants upon return. Our results also suggest that there is no wage penalty nor a wage premium for undocumented migrants compared to stayers. We also find suggestive evidence that undocumented migrants had lower-ranked occupations overseas and had lower earnings and lower savings overseas. Our results are the first to show the long term negative impact of undocumented migration on the migrant even after returning to their country of origin.
    Date: 2017–08–24
  13. By: Guilhem Cassan (University of Namur); Lore Vandewalle (IHEID, Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies, Geneva)
    Abstract: Identity is an important determinant of economic behavior. A limitation of the existing literature is the focus on one identity dimension at a time. We show that the multiplicity of identity dimensions matters for economic behavior and that neglecting it may lead policy makers to overlook important, unintended effects of economic policies. We exploit the randomized nature of political reservations for women in India to show that a policy designed along one identity dimension (gender) alters the distribution of the benefits of this policy along another one (caste). We propose an important variation in gender norms across caste groups as a plausible mechanism.
    Keywords: Intersectionality, identity economics, gender, quotas, affirmative action
    Date: 2017–08–30
  14. By: Sylvaine Lemeilleur (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 - Montpellier SupAgro - Institut national d’études supérieures agronomiques de Montpellier, CIRAD - Centre de Coopération Internationale en Recherche Agronomique pour le Développement); 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 - Montpellier SupAgro - Institut national d’études supérieures agronomiques de Montpellier); Anderson Edilson Presoto (USP - University of São Paulo); Roberta De Castro Souza (USP - University of São Paulo); Maria Sylvia Macchione Saes (USP - University of São Paulo)
    Abstract: We survey Brazilian coffee farmers’ preferences for attributes of voluntary sustainabilitystandards using a choice experiment. We collected original data from 250 coffee farmers wholive in the state of Minas Gerais who were asked to choose from several hypothetical buyingcontracts for eco-certified coffee. Our results suggest that both cash and non-cash paymentsmay motivate farmers to participate in sustainability standard certification schemes that re-quire improved agricultural practices. Preferences for non-cash rewards such as long-termformal contracts or technical assistance, however, appear highly heterogeneous. Results more-over show that the minimum willingness-to-accept for the adoption of composting is twiceas high as the average price premium for certified coffee in the current context, which maypartly explain why most coffee farmers continue to be reluctant to enter the most stringenteco-certification schemes such as the organic standard.
    Keywords: erosion,compost, voluntary sustainability standards,coffee,choice experiment,pesticides,Brazil,pesticide,brésil,café,certification
    Date: 2016

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.
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