nep-dev New Economics Papers
on Development
Issue of 2021‒02‒08
fourteen papers chosen by
Jacob A. Jordaan
Universiteit Utrecht

  1. Gender Equality and Electoral Violence in Africa: Unlocking the Peacemaking Potential of Women By Rasmané Ouedraogo; Idrissa Ouedraogo
  2. Crop Selection and International Differences in Aggregate Agricultural Productivity By Jorge Alvarez; Claudia Berg
  3. Globalization and conflicts: the good, the bad and the ugly of corporations in Africa By Sonno, Tommaso
  4. Do you want to migrate to the United States? Migration intentions and Cultural Traits in Latin America By Riccardo Turati
  5. Women's Employment and Natural Shocks By Canessa, Eugenia; Giannelli, Gianna Claudia
  6. Temporary International Migration, Shocks and Informal Insurance: Analysis Using Panel Data By Chakraborty, Tanika; Pandey, Manish
  7. Do Remittances Influence Household Investment Decisions? Evidence from Sub-Saharan Africa By Md Shahadath Hossain; Adesola Sunmoni
  9. Violence exposure and poverty: Evidence from the Burundi civil war By Marion Mercier; Rama Lionel Ngenzebuke; Philip Verwimp
  10. Experimental Evidence from an Integrated Early Childhood Parenting Program in Sierra Leone By Chandra, Anjali; Mani, Subha; Dolphin, Heather; Dyson, Meredith; Marah, Yembeh
  11. Evaluating the regional impacts of climate change on women's well-being, domestic burdens and food security in Bolivia By Enrique Luis; Helene Maisonnave
  12. A Quantitative Analysis of Female Employment in Senegal By Vivian Malta; Angelica Martinez; Marina Mendes Tavares
  13. Digital Connectivity in sub-Saharan Africa: A Comparative Perspective By Emre Alper; Michal Miktus
  14. The Political Economy of Bureaucratic Overload: Evidence from Rural Development Officials in India By Dasgupta, Aditya; Kapur, Devesh

  1. By: Rasmané Ouedraogo; Idrissa Ouedraogo
    Abstract: We examine the impact of gender equality on electoral violence in Africa using micro-level data from the sixth round of Afrobarometer surveys. The sample covers 30 countries. We find that gender equality is associated with lower electoral violence. Quantitatively, our estimates show that an increase in female-to-male labor force participation ratio by 1 percentage point is correlated with a reduction of the probability of electoral violence across the continent by around 4.2 percentage points. Our results are robust to alternative ways to measure electoral violence and gender equality, as well as to alternative specifications. The findings of this paper support the long-standing view that women empowerment contributes to the reduction of violence and underscore the urgency of addressing gender inequality in Africa.
    Keywords: Gender inequality;Labor force participation;Women;Gender diversity;Income inequality;WP,female-to-male labor force participation ratio,agriculture labor force,rainfall growth,ruling party,election worker
    Date: 2019–08–16
  2. By: Jorge Alvarez; Claudia Berg
    Abstract: A large share of cross-country differences in productivity is explained by differences in agricultural productivity. Using a combination of sub-national agricultural statistics and geospatial datasets on crop-specific potential yields, we study the main drivers of this variation from a macroeconomic perspective. We find that differences in geographically-induced crop-specific comparative advantages can explain a substantial share of the variation in yields across the world. Data reveal substantial gaps between potential and observed yields in most countries. When decomposing these within country gaps, we find that crop selection gaps are on average larger than those induced by input usage alone. The results highlight the importance of understanding the interaction of geography and crop selection drivers in assessing aggregate agricultural productivity differences.
    Keywords: Agricultural sector;Agroindustries;Personal income;Agricultural commodities;Labor;WP,potential yield,crop selection
    Date: 2019–08–16
  3. By: Sonno, Tommaso
    Abstract: Using georeferenced data on the affiliates and headquarters of multinational enterprises together with georeferenced conflict data, this work is the first to establish a causal link between the activities of multinational enterprises and violence. The results indicate that activities which increase local human capital, such as education and health, decrease the probability of civil conflict, while the activity of sectors intense in scarce resources, in particular forestry, increases conflict. The increase in the likelihood of conflict is amplified especially in areas where the leading ethnic groups can place the burden of land deals on unrepresented groups.
    Keywords: multinationals; civil conflict; FDI; ethnic minority
    JEL: C23 D74 F23 L70 O13
    Date: 2020–01
  4. By: Riccardo Turati (IRES/LIDAM, UCLouvain; Departament d'Economia Aplicada, Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona)
    Abstract: This paper empirically investigates whether aspiring emigrants from nineteen Latin American countries to the United States hold a different set of cultural traits compared to stayers. Using Gallup World Poll data and proxy on individual pro social behaviors and political attitudes towards the president of the United States, we observe that aspiring migrants share more pro social behaviors and support more the U.S. political leader than stayers. We find that already existing migration network reduces cultural selection on social behaviors, which holds mainly among the young and less educated population, and in less developed countries. The paper shows that such cultural self-selection is unlikely to affect the distribution of cultural traits in the origin countries, avoiding potential negative effects for Latin American countries. If any, culturally selected immigrants should have a beneficial effect to the United States
    Keywords: International migration, migration intentions, self-selection, cultural traits, Latin America region
    Date: 2021–01
  5. By: Canessa, Eugenia (University of Florence); Giannelli, Gianna Claudia (University of Florence)
    Abstract: We employ georeferenced data and longitudinal household panel survey data to investigate the impact of the dramatic flooding that hit Bangladesh from August-September 2014 on women's employment and empowerment. Development economics models suggest an increase in household members' labour supply as a shock-coping strategy. Our difference-in-differences estimates confirm this assumption: women's employment probability increases by approximately 13 percentage points. Correcting for selection bias due to the initial employment status of women, we also find significant increases in the probability of non-employed women entering employment, in the average monthly income of employed women and in the probability of women engaging in autonomous wage-earning activities. Finally, we show that the greater earning capacity of employed women—instrumented by the intensity of flooding in the villages where women live—contributes to raising their bargaining power within the household as measured by the Women's Empowerment in Agriculture Index and by economic decision-making indicators.
    Keywords: Bangladesh, flood, shock-coping strategy, women's employment, intrahousehold bargaining
    JEL: F66 J16 Q12 Q54
    Date: 2021–01
  6. By: Chakraborty, Tanika (Indian Institute of Management); Pandey, Manish (University of Winnipeg, Manitoba)
    Abstract: We use panel data for rural Kyrgyzstan to examine households' international migration response when faced with shocks. Using a household fixed effects regression model, we find that while a drought shock increases the likelihood of migration, winter and earthquake shocks reduce the likelihood of migration. We use a simple theoretical framework to illustrate the trade-off between two effects of a shock for a household: loss of income and increase in the need of labor services. We show that migration increases when the former effect of a shock dominates, it reduces when the latter effect dominates. We explore these mechanisms by examining how the migration-response to shocks changes in the presence of alternate coping mechanisms and by evaluating the effect of shocks on a household's decision to send and recall a migrant member. We find that when households have easier access to informal finance the migration-response is muted only for shocks for which the adverse income effect dominates. Our findings also suggest that while shocks for which the loss of income effect dominates have a greater effect on the decision to send a migrant, shocks for which the need of labor services effect dominates only affect the decision to recall a migrant. These findings provide evidence in favor of the proposed mechanisms through which shocks affect temporary migration.
    Keywords: temporary migration, shocks, insurance, informal finance, Asia, Kyrgyzstan
    JEL: J61 O15 O16
    Date: 2021–01
  7. By: Md Shahadath Hossain (Department of Economics, Binghamton Univeristy); Adesola Sunmoni (Department of Economics, University of Reading)
    Abstract: The impact of remittances on left behind households is ambiguous a priori due to competing income and substitution effects. Similarly, empirical evidence in the literature is inconclusive. We offer new evidence on the effect of remittances on household investment decisions. We enrich our analysis by considering different types of capital investment and remittance sources. We use data from the World Bank’s Migration and Remittances Household Survey, a recursive bivariate probit model, and instrumental variables approach to account for endogeneity concerns. We find that remittance-receiving households in sub-Saharan Africa are more likely to invest in human and social capital compared to non-remittance receiving households. However, there is substantial variation in investment behaviour across countries. We also show the heterogeneous effect of remittance sources on investment behaviour. Our study is relevant for policymakers seeking to maximise the impact of remittances to foster local economic opportunities.
    Keywords: Remittances, Investments, Africa, Physical capital, Human capital, Social Capital
    JEL: F24 F22 O15 O24 J61
    Date: 2021–01–30
  8. By: Isha Gupta (Department of Economics and Management “Marco Fanno†University of Padova, Italy)
    Abstract: This paper estimates the causal effect of having young children aged 0 to 5 years on mothers’ labour force participation in rural India. In order to address the potential endogeneity in the fertility decision, I exploit Indian families’ preference for having sons. I leverage exogenous variation in the gender of older children aged 6+ years as an instrumental variable for having younger children aged 0 to 5 years in the family. IV estimates show that the mothers’ participation is significantly reduced by 9.9% due to the presence of young children aged 0 to 5 years in the household, with the negative effect mostly driven by mothers belonging to the highest income quartile; mothers with high education; and mothers residing in nuclear families.
    Keywords: Female labour force participation, Fertility, Instrumental variable, Local average treatment effect (LATE), India, Compliers
    JEL: J13 J22 C26
    Date: 2020–12
  9. By: Marion Mercier; Rama Lionel Ngenzebuke; Philip Verwimp
    Abstract: We investigate the relationship between exposure to the Burundi Civil War and household (food) poverty, using a three-wave household-level panel matched with data on local-level violence. We find that households living in localities exposed to the war have been subsequently more likely to be poor than non-exposed households. Within-household estimations, controlling for time-varying heterogeneity at the province level, confirm the positive impact of violence exposure on household poverty. We investigate some of the potential mechanisms at play in the violence – poverty nexus, and the role of violence exposure in household poverty dynamics over time. Our results notably suggest that the destruction of physical capital, as well as a shift of exposed households out of non-farm activities, shape poverty dynamics and lower their chances of durably remaining out of poverty.
    Keywords: Burundi; Civil war; Panel data; Poverty
    Date: 2020–01–01
  10. By: Chandra, Anjali (Fordham University); Mani, Subha (Fordham University); Dolphin, Heather (Catholic Relief Services); Dyson, Meredith (UNICEF); Marah, Yembeh (Catholic Relief Services)
    Abstract: We present findings from an integrated early childhood parenting program on stunting and wasting in Sierra Leone, West Africa. Importantly, where half the communities were randomly assigned to receive the parenting program and the remaining half served as a control that received standard nutritional counseling delivered through community meetings and home visits, keeping all social aspects of the intervention identical between the treatment and the control. We find that access to the intervention reduced the incidence of wasting by 3 percentage points and had no impact on stunting. We find improvements in parenting practices related to psychosocial stimulation and harsh discipline to be the primary mechanisms through which wasting declines. We find no differences in responsive parenting practices between the treatment and the control. These results suggest that integrated early childhood parenting programs when delivered alongside standard nutritional counseling via existing mother support groups have the potential to improve long-term well-being through reductions in wasting as well as improvements in parenting practices related to stimulation and harsh discipline.
    Keywords: early childhood development, nutrition, stimulation, randomized control trial, parenting intervention, Africa
    JEL: I24 I25 J13 J24 O15
    Date: 2021–01
  11. By: Enrique Luis (EDEHN - Equipe d'Economie Le Havre Normandie - ULH - Université Le Havre Normandie - NU - Normandie Université); Helene Maisonnave (EDEHN - Equipe d'Economie Le Havre Normandie - ULH - Université Le Havre Normandie - NU - Normandie Université)
    Abstract: Throughout Bolivia, the degree of vulnerability amongst women and men to the impact of climate change is not equal. Indeed, vulnerability can vary due to regional and gender related differences, as well as varying levels of exposition to climatic events. Furthermore, this vulnerability may be exacerbated by increasing food insecurity due to climate change. This study uses a macro-micro model with a gender focus to assess the impact of climate change on food security and women poverty for Bolivia. We analyse a scenario in which specific regional damage occurs in the agricultural and livestock sector, as well as in the non-agricultural ones, due to adverse climatic events. The simulation reveals negative impacts on the Bolivian economy, with the agricultural sector being the most affected. Food availability is reduced, which ultimately leads to greater food insecurity and food poverty with female-headed households suffering the most. The results also reveal negative effects on employment and increased domestic burdens, especially among women, which increases their vulnerability with women in the highlands being the most affected.
    Keywords: Climate risk,General Equilibrium Model,Gender,Domestic work,Food security
    Date: 2021–01–15
  12. By: Vivian Malta; Angelica Martinez; Marina Mendes Tavares
    Abstract: Female-to-male employment in Senegal increased by 14 percentage points between 2006 and 2011. During the same period years of education of the working age population increased 27 percent for females and 13 percent for males, reducing gender gaps in education. In this paper, we quantitatively investigate the impact of this increase in education on female employment in Senegal. To that end, we build an overlapping generations model that captures barriers that women face over their life-cycle. Our main findings are: (i) the improvement in years of education can explain up to 44 percent of the observed increased in female-to-male employment ratio and (ii) the rest can be explained by a decline in the discrimination against women in the labor market.
    Keywords: Education;Women;Gender diversity;Labor markets;Labor;WP,production function
    Date: 2019–11–08
  13. By: Emre Alper; Michal Miktus
    Abstract: Higher digital connectivity is expected to bring opportunities to leapfrog development in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA). Experience within the region demonstrates that if there is an adequate digital infrastructure and a supportive business environment, new forms of business spring up and create jobs for the educated as well as the less educated. The paper first confirms the global digital divide through the unsupervised machine learning clustering K-means algorithm. Next, it derives a composite digital connectivity index, in the spirit of De Muro-Mazziotta-Pareto, for about 190 economies. Descriptive analysis shows that majority of SSA countries lag in digital connectivity, specifically in infrastructure, internet usage, and knowledge. Finally, using fractional logit regressions we document that better business enabling and regulatory environment, financial access, and urbanization are associated with higher digital connectivity.
    Keywords: Information technology in revenue administration;Infrastructure;Population and demographics;Machine learning;Income;WP,digital connectivity,EDAI SSA distribution,account ownership,ICT indicators database,SSA countries lag
    Date: 2019–09–27
  14. By: Dasgupta, Aditya; Kapur, Devesh
    Abstract: Government programs often fail on the ground because of poor implementation by local bureaucrats. Prominent explanations for poor implementation emphasize bureaucratic rent-seeking and capture. This article documents a different pathology that we term bureaucratic overload: local bureaucrats are often heavily under-resourced relative to their responsibilities. We advance a two-step theory explaining why bureaucratic overload is detrimental to implementation as well as why politicians under-invest in local bureaucracy, emphasizing a lack of electoral incentives. Drawing on a nationwide survey of local rural development officials across India, including time-usage diaries that measure their daily behavior, we provide quantitative evidence that (i) officials with fewer resources are worse at implementing rural development programs, plausibly because they are unable to allocate enough time to managerial tasks and (ii) fewer resources are provided in administrative units where political responsibility for implementation is less clear. The findings shed light on the political economy and bureaucratic behavior underpinning weak local state capacity.
    Date: 2021–01–12

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