nep-dev New Economics Papers
on Development
Issue of 2020‒09‒14
seventeen papers chosen by
Jacob A. Jordaan
Universiteit Utrecht

  1. Migration, labor, and women’s empowerment: Evidence from an agricultural value chain in Bangladesh By de Brauw, Alan; Kramer, Berber; Murphy, Mike
  2. Within-Country Poverty Convergence: Evidence from Mexico By López-Calva, Luis-Felipe; Ortiz-Juarez, Eduardo; Rodriguez Castelan, Carlos
  3. Long-Term Effects of Conditional Cash Transfers on Children: The Brazilian Case By Oliveira, Gabriel; Chagas, André
  4. Multinational Corporation Affiliates, Backward Linkages, and Productivity Spillovers in Developing and Emerging Economies : Evidence and Policy Making By Jordaan,Jacob Arie; Douw,Willem; Qiang,Zhenwei
  5. Who Is Employed ? Evidence from Sub-Saharan Africa on Redefining Employment By Gaddis,Isis; Siwatu,Gbemisola Oseni; Palacios-Lopez,Amparo; Pieters,Janneke
  6. The Effects of Land Title Registration on Tenure Security, Investment and the Allocation of Productive Resources : Evidence from Ghana By Agyei-Holmes,Andrew; Buehren,Niklas; Goldstein,Markus P.; Osei,Robert Darko; Osei-Akoto,Isaac; Udry,Christopher Robert
  7. High-Resolution Poverty Maps in Sub-Saharan Africa By Kamwoo Lee; Jeanine Braithwaite
  8. Estimating the distributional incidence of healthcare spending on maternal health services in Sub-Saharan Africa: Benefit Incidence Analysis in Burkina Faso, Malawi, and Zambia By Martin RUDASINGWA
  9. Income diversification and household welfare in Tanzania 2008-2013 By Rumman Khan; Oliver Morrissey
  10. Designing for empowerment impact in agricultural development projects: Experimental evidence from the Agriculture, Nutrition, and Gender Linkages (ANGeL) project in Bangladesh By Quisumbing, Agnes R.; Ahmed, Akhter; Hoddinott, John F.; Pereira, Audrey; Roy, Shalini
  11. Autonomy and Specificity in Agricultural Technology Adoption : Evidence from Mexico By Corral,Carolina; Gine,Xavier; Mahajan,Aprajit; Seira,Enrique
  12. Civil War and Labor-Market Outcomes in Sierra Leone By Vincent de Paul Mboutchouang Author-Name: Jorge Davalos Author-Name: James Fomba Sandy Author-Name: Isata Mahoi Author-Name: Jennifer Korie Chetachi
  13. Can Urbanization Improve Household Welfare? Evidence from Ethiopia By Kibrom A. Abay Author-Name: Luca Tiberti Author-Name: Tsega G. Mezgebo Author-Name: Meron Endale
  14. Trade Disruption, Industrialisation, and the Setting Sun of British Colonial Rule in India By Roberto Bonfatti; Björn Brey
  15. Remittances and Non-Farm Self-Employment among the Left-Behind: Evidence from Nepal By Paras Kharel Author-Name: Kshitiz Dahal Author-Name: Jorge Davalos
  16. Blame it on the Rain: The Effects of Weather Shocks on Formal Rural Employment in Colombia By Camilo Bohorquez-Penuela; Andrea Otero-Cortes
  17. Intra-African Trade By William W. Olney

  1. By: de Brauw, Alan; Kramer, Berber; Murphy, Mike
    Abstract: As a substantial portion of the rural labor force migrates to urban areas, it is commonly assumed that women could take over traditionally male tasks in agricultural production, with potentially empowering outcomes for women. We study how changes in the supply of labor may influence female labor participation and empowerment outcomes. Using a detailed panel dataset on jute producers in Bangladesh, we test whether out-migration of household members and perceived labor shortages are associated with the share of household and hired labor performed by women, and women’s empowerment. When a household experiences reduced household or hired labor supply, we observe a relatively larger use of female household labor but not of female hired labor. We find that reduced male household labor supply is associated with improved wages mainly for male laborers, whereas reduced female household labor is associated with improved wages for male laborers and enhanced empowerment of other women in the household. These findings suggest that given existing gender norms, male and female labor are not perfect substitutes for one another, and as a result, male outmigration is not associated with improved outcomes for women in cash crop production. Our results demonstrate a need for better understanding of the role of gender in rural labor markets, particularly in contexts of rapid urbanization.
    Keywords: BANGLADESH; SOUTH ASIA; ASIA; migration; rural areas; urban areas; empowerment; gender; women; women's empowerment; agriculture; value chains; labour; households; agricultural value chain; rural-urban migration
    Date: 2020
  2. By: López-Calva, Luis-Felipe (United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)); Ortiz-Juarez, Eduardo (King's College London); Rodriguez Castelan, Carlos (World Bank)
    Abstract: Trends in aggregate growth and poverty reduction hide a multiplicity of development processes at the local level. The analysis reported in this paper exploits a unique panel dataset of poverty maps covering almost 2,400 municipalities in Mexico and spanning 22 years, first, to test hypothesis that there is within-country income convergence. Second, through a decomposition of the poverty convergence elasticity, the analysis investigates whether this convergence, if it exists, has translated into poverty convergence. In a context of overall stagnant economic growth and poverty reduction since 1990, the analysis finds evidence of both income and poverty convergence among municipalities. As a cause of these, the results point to a combination of positive performance among the poorest municipalities and stagnant or deteriorating performance among more well off municipalities. Redistributive programs such as cash transfers to poor households have played an important role in driving these results by bolstering income growth among the poorest municipalities, while also inducing progressive changes in the distribution of income.
    Keywords: income, inequality, convergence, poverty convergence elasticity, small area estimation
    JEL: I32 O47 O54 R11
    Date: 2020–08
  3. By: Oliveira, Gabriel (Departamento de Economia, Universidade de São Paulo); Chagas, André (Departamento de Economia, Universidade de São Paulo)
    Abstract: In this paper, we present some long-term effects of the largest Conditional Cash Transfers program in the world, and one of the pioneers, the Bolsa Fam´ılia Program (BFP). We focus on the effects on Schooling attained in early adulthood and Labor Market outcomes of individuals more or less exposed during their childhood. The estimates were enabled by linking identified data from Formal Labor Market, BFP Payment Records, and the Single Registry (SR). In this Natural Experiment, the main identification strategy relies on a rich set of control variables, and on the fact that the release of BFP resources for registered families is automatized and based on municipality poverty parameters estimated by the government. In an alternative identification strategy, we consider an instrumental variable, the observed proxy for the municipality effort to register vulnerable families. These strategies help to solve the potential selection bias of families to the SR, and consequently to the treatment. Nonetheless, since the program selects the most vulnerable families, the threats to the identification suggest that the estimates are lower bounds. Our main results show positive long-term effects on Schooling, and on the Formal Labor Market participation, while mixed results are observed for Earnings. Heterogeneity tests suggest that the effects are stronger for boys, for smaller cities, and for families with never formally employed parents.
    Keywords: Conditional Cash Transfers; Long-term effects; Human Capital; Labor Market; Bolsa Família
    JEL: I25 I38 J24 O15
    Date: 2020–09–03
  4. By: Jordaan,Jacob Arie; Douw,Willem; Qiang,Zhenwei
    Abstract: Recent research on productivity spillovers from affiliates of multinational corporations in developing and emerging economies finds that backward linkages from affiliates of foreign-owned firms to local suppliers constitute the main channel transmitting productivity spillovers. This finding has important policy implications, given that host economy governments often spend considerable resources on attracting multinational corporation investments and promoting their impact on technological development and economic growth. This paper conducts a new and comprehensive survey of recent empirical studies that focus on the drivers and impacts of backward linkages between multinational corporation affiliates and their local suppliers. The literature survey reveals that several characteristics of multinational corporation affiliates and domestic firms, host economy conditions, and various mediating factors influence the level of use of local suppliers, the nature and degree of technology dissemination, and the materialization of productivity spillovers among domestic firms. These findings are used to identify the main areas where policy making can be effective. The paper discusses various types of soft or light-handed industrial policies that host economy governments can design and implement to foster the extent of linkages between multinational corporations and local suppliers, facilitate technology dissemination, and enhance productivity spillovers among domestic firms.
    Keywords: International Trade and Trade Rules,Macroeconomic Management,Economic Forecasting,Governance Diagnostic Capacity Building,Macroeconomics and Economic Growth,Economic Policy, Institutions and Governance,Access to Finance
    Date: 2020–08–24
  5. By: Gaddis,Isis; Siwatu,Gbemisola Oseni; Palacios-Lopez,Amparo; Pieters,Janneke
    Abstract: The 19th International Conference of Labour Statisticians (in 2013) redefined labor statistics standards. A major change was to narrow the definition of employment to work for pay or profit. By the revised standards, farming that is only or mainly intended for own use is no longer considered employment, and such a farmer is no longer considered to be employed or in the labor force. This paper analyzes the implications of the revised standards on measures of employment in Sub-Saharan Africa obtained from multi-topic household surveys. It shows that, in some contexts, 70 to 80 percent of farmers produce only or mainly for family consumption and are therefore, based on this activity, not considered employed by the revised standards. However, there is wide variation across countries and regions. Moreover, farmers are more likely to report intending to produce for sale at the end of the growing season of the main local crop than earlier in the season. Men are more likely than women to produce for sale. The revised standards lead to significantly lower employment-to-population ratios in rural Africa and change the sectoral composition of the employed population toward non-agricultural sectors. The paper concludes with recommendations for data producers and users.
    Keywords: Food Security,Livestock and Animal Husbandry,Climate Change and Agriculture,Crops and Crop Management Systems,Labor&Employment Law,Labor Markets
    Date: 2020–08–27
  6. By: Agyei-Holmes,Andrew; Buehren,Niklas; Goldstein,Markus P.; Osei,Robert Darko; Osei-Akoto,Isaac; Udry,Christopher Robert
    Abstract: Smallholder farmers'investment decisions and the efficiency of resource allocation depend on the security of land tenure. This paper develops a simple model that captures essential institutional features of rural land markets in Ghana, including the dependence of future rights over land on current cultivation and land rental decisions. The model predictions guide the evaluation of a pilot land titling intervention that took place in an urbanizing area located in the Central Region of Ghana. The evaluation is based on a regression discontinuity design combined with three rounds of household survey data collected over a period of six years. The analysis finds strong markers for the program's success in registering land in the targeted program area. However, land registration does not translate into agricultural investments or increased credit taking. Instead, treated households decrease their amount of agricultural labor, accompanied by only a small reduction of agricultural production and no changes in productivity. In line with this result, households decrease their landholdings amid a surge in land valuations. The analysis uncovers important within-household differences in how women and men respond differentially to the program. There appears to be a general shift to nonfarm economic activities, and women's business profits increased considerably.
    Keywords: Agricultural Economics,Legal Reform,Legislation,Regulatory Regimes,Social Policy,Common Property Resource Development,Legal Products,Judicial System Reform,Gender and Development,Food Security
    Date: 2020–09–01
  7. By: Kamwoo Lee; Jeanine Braithwaite
    Abstract: Up-to-date poverty maps are an important tool for policymakers, but until now, have been prohibitively expensive to produce. We propose a generalizable prediction methodology to produce poverty maps at the village level using geospatial data and machine learning algorithms. We tested the proposed method for 25 Sub-Saharan African countries and validated them against survey data. The proposed method can increase the validity of both single country and cross-country estimations leading to higher precision in poverty maps of the 25 countries than previously available. More importantly, our cross-country estimation enables the creation of poverty maps when it is not practical or cost-effective to field new national household surveys, as is the case with many Sub-Saharan African countries and other low- and middle-income countries.
    Date: 2020–09
  8. By: Martin RUDASINGWA
    Abstract: Improving access to maternal health services is a critical policy concern, especially in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) where maternal mortality rates remain very high, particularly so among the poorest segments of society. Hence, following the global call to reduce maternal mortality embedded in the Sustainable Development Goal 3, multiple interventions have been designed and implemented across SSA countries to foster progress towards Universal Health Coverage (UHC) of maternal health services, including skilled birth attendance. While evidence on the impact of these interventions on access to service use is increasing, evidence on the distributional incidence of the financial investment they entail is still limited. This paper aims to close this gap in knowledge by conducting a quasi-longitudinal benefit incidence analysis to assess equality of both public and overall health spending on maternal health services in three Sub-Saharan African countries: Burkina Faso, Malawi and Zambia. The study relied on healthcare utilization data derived from different national-level household surveys (including Demographic and Health Survey, Performance-based Financing Survey, and Zambia Household Health and Expenditure Survey) and health expenditure data derived from National Health Accounts. The findings demonstrate increasing equality in health spending over time, but also considerable persistent heterogeneity in distributional incidence across provinces/regions/districts. These findings suggest that the implementation of UHC-specific reforms targeting maternal care was effective in increasing equality in health spending, meaning that more financial resources reached the poorest segments of society, but was not yet sufficient to remove differences across provinces/regions/districts. Further research is needed to investigate sources of regional disparities and identify strategies to overcome them.
    Keywords: Burkina Faso, Zambie
    JEL: Q
    Date: 2020–09–02
  9. By: Rumman Khan; Oliver Morrissey
    Abstract: This paper uses three waves of Tanzanian National Panel Surveys (2008/09, 2010/11, and 2012/13) to construct a panel from 3,676 households that appear in at least two waves to explore the effect of income diversification on household welfare measured in terms of food consumption. The analysis considers four sources of labour income in addition to farming. Increasing diversification is associated with higher welfare, but there are differences by gender and activity type. Non-agricultural wage employment is clearly beneficial, irrespective of gender, and has had relatively high growth.
    Keywords: income diversification, Labour income, Gender, household welfare, Welfare, Tanzania
    Date: 2020
  10. By: Quisumbing, Agnes R.; Ahmed, Akhter; Hoddinott, John F.; Pereira, Audrey; Roy, Shalini
    Abstract: The importance of women’s roles for nutrition-sensitive agricultural projects is increasingly recognized, yet little is known about whether such projects improve women’s empowerment and gender equality. We study the Agriculture, Nutrition, and Gender Linkages (ANGeL) pilot project, which was implemented as a cluster-randomized controlled trial by the Government of Bangladesh. The project’s treatment arms included agricultural training, nutrition behavior change communication (BCC), and gender sensitization trainings to husbands and wives together – with these components combined additively, such that the impact of gender sensitization could be distinguished from that of agriculture and nutrition trainings. Empowerment was measured using the internationally-validated project-level Women’s Empowerment in Agriculture Index (pro-WEAI), and attitudes regarding gender roles were elicited from both men and women, to explore potentially gender-transformative impacts. Our study finds that ANGeL increased both women’s and men’s empowerment, raised the prevalence of households achieving gender parity, and led to small improvements in the gender attitudes of both women and men. We find significant increases in women’s empowerment scores and empowerment status from all treatment arms but with no significant differences across these. We find no evidence of unintended impacts on workloads and we note inconclusive evidence of possible increases in intimate partner violence (IPV). Our results also suggest some potential benefits of bundling nutrition and gender components with an agricultural development intervention; however, many of these benefits seem to be driven by bundling nutrition with agriculture. While we cannot assess the extent to which including men and women within the same treatment arms contributed to our results, it is plausible that the positive impacts of all treatment arms on women’s empowerment outcomes may have arisen from implementation modalities that provided information to both husbands and wives when they were together. The role of engaging men and women jointly in interventions is a promising area for future research.
    Keywords: BANGLADESH; SOUTH ASIA; ASIA; empowerment; gender; agricultural development; agriculture; nutrition; women; women's empowerment; randomized controlled trials; gender norms; nutrition-sensitive agriculture
    Date: 2020
  11. By: Corral,Carolina; Gine,Xavier; Mahajan,Aprajit; Seira,Enrique
    Abstract: This paper explores heterogeneity in soil quality, lack of knowledge, and autonomy as explanations for the low adoption of improved agricultural practices. The paper uses data from a randomized field experiment that combined localized soil analyses, tailored input recommendations, extension services, and an in-kind grant. The analysis finds that while neither the degree of recommendation specificity (plot versus cluster level) nor the extent of autonomy (defined as the freedom of choice in spending the in-kind grant) had any effect on adoption during the intervention, farmers with autonomy had substantially higher adoption of improved practices two years after the intervention ended.
    Date: 2020–08–25
  12. By: Vincent de Paul Mboutchouang Author-Name: Jorge Davalos Author-Name: James Fomba Sandy Author-Name: Isata Mahoi Author-Name: Jennifer Korie Chetachi
    Abstract: This paper provides evidences of the lasting effects conflict exposure during different stages of life on the long-term labor-market outcomes of civilians in Sierra Leone. We took advantage of variations in time and location of the conflict and used a combination of data from the Sierra Leone Integrated Household Survey (2011) and various other data related to human-rights violations and loss of assets during war. Our results suggest a negative effect of conflict exposure during primary school age on long-term labor-market participation and employment. More precisely, exposure during this stage of life can reduce participation in the labor market or employment by up to 3%. The study also established the negative impact of conflict exposure from utero stage through primary-school age on hourly wages.
    Keywords: Conflict, Labor-market participation, Employment, wage, education
    JEL: N97 E24 I25
    Date: 2020
  13. By: Kibrom A. Abay Author-Name: Luca Tiberti Author-Name: Tsega G. Mezgebo Author-Name: Meron Endale
    Abstract: Despite evolving evidence that Africa is experiencing urbanization in a different way, empirical evaluations of the welfare implications of urban-development programs in Africa remain scant. We investigated the welfare implications of recent urbanization in rural areas and small towns in Ethiopia using household-level longitudinal data and satellite-based night-light intensity. Controlling for time-invariant unobserved heterogeneity (across individuals and localities) and exploiting intertemporal and interspatial variation in satellite-based night-light intensity, we found that urbanization, as measured by night-light intensity, was associated with significant welfare improvement. In particular, we found that a one-unit increase in night-light intensity was associated with an improvement in household welfare of about 2%. Much of this was driven by the increase in labor-market participation in the non-farm sector, mainly salaried employment, induced by urbanization. Other potential impact pathways, such as an increase in consumer prices or migration explained little (if any) of the change in household welfare. Finally, our quantile and inequality analyses suggested that the observed urbanization had a negligible effect on the distribution of household welfare. Our results can inform public policy debates on the consequences and implications of urban expansion in Africa.
    Keywords: urbanization, night-light intensity, welfare, labor-market outcomes, Ethiopia, sub-Saharan Africa
    Date: 2020
  14. By: Roberto Bonfatti; Björn Brey
    Abstract: Colonial trade encouraged the colonies to specialise in primary products. Did this prevent in-dustrialisation in the colonies? And did lack of industrialisation, in turn, help to keep the colonies under control? To answer these questions, we examine the impact of the temporary collapse in trade between Britain and India due to World War I, on industrialisation and anti-imperial feelings in India. Exploiting cross-district variation in exposure to the trade shock stemming from initial differences in industrial specialisation, we find that districts more exposed to the trade shock experienced substantially faster industrial growth in 1911-21, placing them on a higher level of industrialisation which has persisted up to today. Using the World War I trade shock as an instrument for industrialisation levels, we also find that more industrialised districts were more likely to express anti-imperial feelings in 1922, and to vote for the Indian National Congress in the landmark election of 1937. These results suggest that colonial trade may have played an important role in preventing colonial industrialisation, and in embedding foreign rule.
    Keywords: colonial trade, India, infant-industry argument, decolonisation
    JEL: F14 F54 O14 N65
    Date: 2020
  15. By: Paras Kharel Author-Name: Kshitiz Dahal Author-Name: Jorge Davalos
    Abstract: We estimated the impact of remittances from international migration on the labor supply of left-behind household members to non-farm self-employment and on the performance of the non-farm enterprises they operated. We used data from a nationally representative household survey from Nepal that included an enterprise module. We accounted for both the truncated nature of observed hours worked and the endogeneity of remittances when assessing the impact on labor supply, and, in estimating the effects on firm performance, we addressed selection into operating a non-farm enterprise as well as the endogeneity of remittances. Remittances were found to encourage women to reduce their labor supply in non-farm self-employment, whereas there was no significant effect on men. We found evidence that the disincentive effect was strong enough to exert a negative influence on the revenues of non-farm enterprises operated by the left-behind labor force.
    Keywords: Remittances, Migration, Labour supply, Microenterprises, Entrepreneurship
    JEL: J22 F22 L20 O20
    Date: 2020
  16. By: Camilo Bohorquez-Penuela (Banco de la República de Colombia); Andrea Otero-Cortes (Banco de la República de Colombia)
    Abstract: Episodes of excessive or low rainfall have not only become more frequent, but also more severe. These events can affect agricultural production and local labor markets. By combining social security records, that allow us to measure formal employment, with administrative data from weather stations, we estimate the effects of municipality-level precipitation shocks on formal rural employment in Colombia, as well as country-wide events like El Niño and La Niña phenomena. Fixed effects estimates show that episodes of excessive rainfall—measured as those that are above the 80th percentile of historical mean precipitation in the last 30 years for each municipality—have a negative impact on formal employment in rural areas for both the agricultural and non-agricultural sector, ranging from -2.2 percent to -3 percent, respectively. Likewise, we find that both El Niño and La Niña phenomena have a negative impact on total formal employment in rural areas. Additionally, we explore if the effect of rain shocks varies depending on the access to irrigation and drainage technologies, finding that municipalities with high prevalence of irrigation systems are less affected by episodes of low rainfall. **** RESUMEN: Los episodios de excesiva o poca precipitación no solo se han vuelto más frecuentes sino que cada vez son más severos. Estos eventos pueden afectar la producción agrícola y las dinámicas de los mercados laborales locales. Combinando registros de seguridad social, que nos permiten identificar empleo formal, con datos administrativos de las estaciones meteorológicas, estimamos los efectos de los choques de lluvia a nivel municipal sobre el empleo formal rural en Colombia, al igual que el impacto de los fenómenos de El Niño y La Niña. Los estimadores de efectos fijos muestran que los episodios de excesiva precipitación, medidos como aquellos que se ubican por encima del percentil 80 de la distribución histórica para cada municipio, tienen un impacto negativo sobre el empleo formal rural tanto para el sector agrícola como para el no agrícola, ubicándose entre -2.2 y -3 por ciento, respectivamente. De igual forma, encontramos que los fenómenos de El Niño y La Niña tienen un impacto negativo sobre el empleo formal rural. Adicionalmente, exploramos si el efecto de los choques de lluvia depende del acceso a sistemas de riego, encontrando que municipios con alta incidencia de estos mecanismos de irrigación son menos propensos a verse afectados por episodios de poca precipitación.
    Keywords: Formal labor market, employment, weather shocks, agriculture, Colombia, Mercado laboral formal, empleo, choques climáticos, agricultura, Colombia
    JEL: J20 J30 J43 J46 Q54 R23
    Date: 2020–09
  17. By: William W. Olney (Williams College)
    Abstract: This paper examines why the intra-continental trade share in Africa is only 12%, compared to 47% in North America, 53% in Asia, and 69% in Europe. Results show that exports to other African countries decrease more quickly with distance and increase less quickly with economic size, than exports to non-African countries. The analysis investigates possible explanations and identifies factors that promote trade between African countries. Intra-African exports are found to disproportionately increase with infrastructure (especially roads), trade agreements, and a more efficient customs clearing process. Diversifying the domestic economy away from agriculture and towards services is also associated with more intra-African trade. These results can guide efforts to promote African economic integration.
    Keywords: intra-continental trade, exports, infrastructure, corruption, trade agreements, Africa
    JEL: F14 F15 O55
    Date: 2020–07

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