nep-dev New Economics Papers
on Development
Issue of 2021‒05‒24
nineteen papers chosen by
Jacob A. Jordaan
Universiteit Utrecht

  1. The Effect of Colonial and Pre-Colonial Institutions on Contemporary Education in Africa By Leone Walters; Carolyn Chisadza; Matthew Clance
  2. Prenatal health and weather-related shocks under social safety net policy in Kenya By Silas Ongudi; Djiby Racine Thiam
  3. Transhumant Pastoralism, Climate Change and Conflict in Africa By Eoin F. McGuirk; Nathan Nunn
  4. Assessing Gender Gaps in Employment and Earnings in Africa: The Case of Eswatini By Brixiova, Zuzana; Imai, Susumu; Kangoye, Thierry; Yameogo, Nadege Desiree
  5. Social Inequalities, Identity, and the Structure of Political Cleavages in Argentina, Chile, Costa Rica, Colombia, Mexico, and Peru, 1952-2019 By Oscar Barrera; Ana Leiva; Clara Martínez-Toledano; Álvaro Zúñiga-Cordero
  6. IFAD Research Series Issue 65 - Impacts of agricultural value chain development in a mountainous region: Evidence from Nepal By Kafle, Kashi; Songsermsawas, Tisorn; Winters, Paul
  7. Measuring energy poverty in South Africa based on householdrequired energy consumption By Yuxiang Yeú; Steven F. Koch
  8. The determinants of early marriage and under-five child mortality in Afghanistan By Shonazarova, Shirin; Eshchanov, Bahtiyor
  9. Encouragement and Distortionary Effects of Conditional Cash Transfers By Bryan, Gharad; Chowdhury, Shyamal; Mobarak, Ahmed Mushfiq; Morten, Melanie; Smits, Joeri
  10. Typhoon and Agricultural Production Portfolio Empirical Evidence for a Developing Economy By Tran, Thi Xuyen
  11. Does Child Support Grant incentivise childbirth in South Africa? By Adeola Oyenubi; Uma Kollamparambil
  12. Liquidity constraints and free post-secondary education. Evidence from Colombia By Luis Fernando Gamboa, Jaime Millan-Quijano
  13. Relationship between education and households’ electricity-saving behaviour in South Africa: A multilevel logistic analysis By Kabeya Clement Mulamba
  14. Complementarities in Infrastructure: Evidence from Rural India By Vanden Eynde, Oliver; Wren-Lewis, Liam
  15. The effects of technology intensity in manufacturing on CO2 emissions: Evidence from developing countries By Elvis Avenyo; Fiona Tregenna
  16. Inequality and structural transformation in the changing nature of work: The case of Indonesia By Arief Anshory Yusuf; Putri Riswani Halim
  17. Economic Valuation of Safe Water from New Boreholes in Rural Zambia: A Coping Cost Approach with Estimates of Internal Rate of Return By Yasuharu Shimamura; Satoshi Shimizutani; Shimpei Taguchi; Hiroyuki Yamada
  18. Measuring earnings inequality in South Africa using household survey and administrative tax microdata By Andrew Kerr
  19. The China trade shock and the gender wage gap in India: A District-level analysis By Kajari Saha

  1. By: Leone Walters; Carolyn Chisadza; Matthew Clance
    Abstract: This paper argues that contrary to previous ï¬ ndings, present-day education outcomes in Africa cannot be independently attributed to colonial or pre-colonial ethnic institutions. We propose that it is instead the complementarity or contention between colonial and precolonial institutions that result in education outcomes we observe today. Using geolocated DHS literacy outcomes for Cameroon, Cˆote d’Ivoire, Ghana, and Nigeria, our ï¬ ndings suggest that the positive effect of British rule on contemporary literacy is diminished in centralised ethnic regions. This paper contributes to debates on colonial and pre-colonial ethnic influences on African development, moving beyond country-level analysis.
    Keywords: Ethnic Institutions, Education, Africa
    JEL: I25 N17 Z13
    Date: 2021–01
  2. By: Silas Ongudi; Djiby Racine Thiam
    Abstract: Exposure to weather shocks around the time of birth has been shown to have deleterious effects on later life outcomes. In the short run, such shocks can lead to income loss, especially when households are not insured but rely heavily on rainfed agricultural activities. In the long run, however, they can cause a reduction in adult earnings, human capital development and health outcomes. Despite these findings, there are few studies examining the extent to which receiving a cash transfer can help buffer the effects of weather shocks experienced early in life, especially in Sub-Saharan Africa. We close this gap in research and use a randomized control trial dataset from Hunger Safety Net Programme (HSNP) in Northern Kenya and apply regression models to estimate the effect sizes. We find that weather shocks experienced early in life reduce a child’s height for age (HA) and weight for age (WA) Z- scores by 0.78 and 0.09 standard deviation respectively, controlling for other covariates. Moreover, we show that receiving a cash transfer buffers the negative effects of weather shocks. Specifically, receiving a cash transfer reduces exposure to weather shock by about 0.29 standard deviations under HA Z-scores when drought is measured in cumulative terms. However, we do not observe any buffering effect of receiving cash transfer on child health indicators when drought is measured during in-utero period. The paper also tested fragile male hypothesis where adverse weather shocks are expected to affect male children more than they would to females. Our results suggest that adverse weather events are worse for male children, exacerbating the male-female differences in presence of weather shocks.
    Keywords: Weather shocks, Hunger Safety Net Program, Regression Model, Z- scores, Fragile male hypothesis
    JEL: I15 Q54 Q56
    Date: 2020–08
  3. By: Eoin F. McGuirk; Nathan Nunn
    Abstract: We consider the effects of climate change on seasonally migrant populations that herd livestock – i.e., transhumant pastoralists – in Africa. Traditionally, transhumant pastoralists beneï¬ t from a cooperative relationship with sedentary agriculturalists whereby arable land is used for crop farming in the wet season and animal grazing in the dry season. Droughts can disrupt this arrangement by inducing pastoral groups to migrate to agricultural lands before the harvest, causing conflict to emerge. We examine this hypothesis by combining ethnographic information on the traditional locations of transhumant pastoralists and sedentary agriculturalists with high-resolution data on the location and timing of rainfall and violent conflict events in Africa from 1989–2018. We show that droughts in the territory of transhumant pastoralists lead to conflict in neighboring areas. Consistent with the hypothesis, these conflict events are concentrated in agricultural areas; they occur during the wet season and not the dry season; and they are due to rainfall’s impact on plant biomass growth. This mechanism explains a sizable proportion of conflict events in Africa, particularly civil conflicts and religious-extremist attacks. We ï¬ nd that the effects are muted in the presence of irrigation aid projects, but not in the presence of other forms of foreign aid. The effects approach zero as pastoral groups share more political power.
    Keywords: Transhumant pastoralism, sedentary agriculture, seasonal migration, conflict, weather
    JEL: N10 Q54 Z1
    Date: 2021–05
  4. By: Brixiova, Zuzana (University of Economics Prague); Imai, Susumu (University of Technology, Sydney); Kangoye, Thierry (African Development Bank); Yameogo, Nadege Desiree (World Bank)
    Abstract: Persistent gender gaps characterize labor markets in many African countries. Utilizing Eswatini's first three labor market surveys (conducted in 2007, 2010, and 2013), this paper provides first systematic evidence on the country's gender gaps in employment and earnings. We find that women have notably lower employment rates and earnings than men, even though the global financial crisis had a less negative impact on women than it had on men. Both unadjusted and unexplained gender earnings gaps are higher in self-employment than in wage employment. Tertiary education and urban location account for a large part of the gender earnings gap and mitigate high female propensity to self-employment. Our findings suggest that policies supporting female higher education and rural-urban mobility could reduce persistent inequalities in Eswatini's labor market outcomes as well as in other middle-income countries in southern Africa.
    Keywords: gender, employment, income, multivariate analysis, policies
    JEL: J16 J21 L26 O12
    Date: 2021–05
  5. By: Oscar Barrera (WIL - World Inequality Lab , PSE - Paris School of Economics - ENPC - École des Ponts ParisTech - ENS Paris - École normale supérieure - Paris - PSL - Université Paris sciences et lettres - UP1 - Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - EHESS - École des hautes études en sciences sociales - INRAE - Institut National de Recherche pour l’Agriculture, l’Alimentation et l’Environnement); Ana Leiva (UiO - University of Oslo); Clara Martínez-Toledano (WIL - World Inequality Lab , Imperial College London); Álvaro Zúñiga-Cordero (WIL - World Inequality Lab , PSE - Paris School of Economics - ENPC - École des Ponts ParisTech - ENS Paris - École normale supérieure - Paris - PSL - Université Paris sciences et lettres - UP1 - Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - EHESS - École des hautes études en sciences sociales - INRAE - Institut National de Recherche pour l’Agriculture, l’Alimentation et l’Environnement)
    Abstract: This paper combines electoral surveys to analyze the transformation of the structure of political cleavages in Argentina, Chile, Costa Rica, Colombia, Mexico and Peru over the last decades. We document that Latin American countries are characterized by personalist leaderships (e.g., Fujimori in Peru, Uribe in Colombia) and important historical cleavages (e.g., anti vs. pro-PLN in Costa Rica) that blur class-based voting patterns and have led in some cases to the emergence of competing pro-poor and ethnic-based competing coalitions (e.g., PRN-PLN in Costa Rica, Fujimori-Humala in Peru) over the last decades. The party systems of Costa Rica, Colombia and Peru have thus generated volatile political socioeconomic cleavages, while in the more institutionalized party systems of Argentina, Brazil, Chile and Mexico they have been less volatile.
    Date: 2021–03
  6. By: Kafle, Kashi; Songsermsawas, Tisorn; Winters, Paul
    Abstract: This analysis investigates the potential mechanism and the practical significance of the impacts of agricultural value chain development in a geographically challenging rural area of a developing country. We use data from a primary survey administered in the hill and mountainous region in Western Nepal. We show that linking small-scale producers with regional and local traders can help increase agricultural income. We unpack the potential mechanism of the impact pathway and show that the increase in agricultural income is a consequence of higher agricultural revenues, owing to a higher volume of sales at lower prices. The positive impact on household income is practically significant in that it translated into improved food security, dietary diversity and household resilience. Targeted value chain interventions that strengthen and stabilize small-scale producers’ access to markets can contribute to rural poverty reduction via an increase in agricultural income.
    Keywords: Agricultural and Food Policy, Food Consumption/Nutrition/Food Safety, Food Security and Poverty
    Date: 2021–05–20
  7. By: Yuxiang Yeú; Steven F. Koch
    Abstract: Energy poverty is a major concern in most of developing countries while its measurement has not been fully addressed due to the complexity of energy basic needs estimation. This study contributes to the literature by measuring energy poverty with focus on household required energy consumption using widely available household budget survey data. We apply the Foster-Greer-Thorbecke (FGT) poverty measures in a developing but somewhat energy advanced context, South Africa. Our energy poverty line is based on household dependent required energy consumption, and we use data from a recent South African Living Conditions Survey. We ï¬ nd that headcount energy poverty is extensive, as is the gap and the severity of energy poverty. Decomposition results suggest that energy poverty rates decrease with income, and lower income groups contribute more to total poverty than higher income groups across all the three poverty indexes. Our results are consistent with those from previous research, which suggests that our measure of required energy may be a reasonable option for understanding energy poverty.
    Keywords: Energy poverty, Required energy consumption, FGT poverty measures
    Date: 2020–12
  8. By: Shonazarova, Shirin; Eshchanov, Bahtiyor
    Abstract: We use data from the Demographic and Health Survey of Afghanistan 2015 to conduct a study of determinants of early marriage and effect of early marriage on child mortality under five years. In order to conduct this study, binary logit, probit (Marginal effects) and OLS regression methods were used. The first step in this study was to find the determinants of early marriage and conduct binary logit analysis. According to the result, it was found that the main determinants of early marriage are the education of women, employment status, exposure to media, ethnicity, current age group, marital status, number of wives and unions, region, place of residence and age at first sexual activity. Education, ethnicity, age at first sexual activity significantly affect the likelihood of early marriage. Moreover, after finding the determinants of early marriage, we analyzed the effect of early marriage on child mortality under five years using probit (Marginal effects) and OLS regression methods. According to the results obtained after the analysis, it was found that early marriage increases the likelihood of child mortality by 17.57%, 17.54% and 14.28% among all children, sons and daughters, respectively. According to OLS estimates, early marriage increases child mortality by 0.04, 0.02, and 0.02 among all children, sons, and daughters, respectively. Moreover, it was found that number of wives, years since first cohabitation, contraceptive usage, age at first birth, place of residence, wealth index, number of family members, women and children under five years and ethnicity affect the likelihood and number of children mortality under five years. Also, we address endogeneity problem of origin household selection.
    Keywords: early marriage, children mortality, determinants of early marriage, Afghanistan
    JEL: I31 I38 I39 J1 J12 J13 J16
    Date: 2020–06–01
  9. By: Bryan, Gharad (London School of Economics); Chowdhury, Shyamal (University of Sydney); Mobarak, Ahmed Mushfiq (Yale University); Morten, Melanie (Stanford University); Smits, Joeri (Harvard Kennedy School)
    Abstract: Conditional cash transfer (CCT) programs aim to reduce poverty or achieve other social goals by making the transfers conditional upon the receivers' actions. Conditions are designed to encourage some desirable behavior that recipients might otherwise under-invest in. An unintended consequence of the conditionality may be to distort recipients' actions in ways that lower their welfare. The transfer size plays an important role in shaping such distortionary effects. In certain circumstances, a larger transfer increases distortion more than that it raises benefits from stronger encouragement, implying that (i) there is an optimal transfer size for CCTs, and (ii) unconditional cash transfers (UCTs) may be better than CCTs when the transfer amount is large. We illustrate a range of distortions arising from CCT programs around the world. We then introduce an experimental design that permits a test of this distortionary effect, and implement it in a cash transfer program conditional on seasonal labor migration in rural Indonesia. We find that when the transfer size exceeds the amount required for travel expenses, distortion increases and CCT program outcomes deteriorate.
    Keywords: conditional cash transfers, distortion, seasonal migration
    Date: 2021–04
  10. By: Tran, Thi Xuyen (Helmut Schmidt University, Hamburg)
    Abstract: In this paper, we investigate whether and how households adjust their agricultural practices such as cultivation and livestock to adapt to a severe typhoon.We, therefore, make use of a natural experiment coming from the strong typhoon Ketsana in 2009. We apply the difference-in-differences approach using micro-data on household level and spatial data of this severe typhoon. Our empirical findings suggest that households alter their agricultural activities in response to a strong typhoon. While they decrease the crops-planted area, they tend to purchase more livestock in the short term and in the medium term. Our paper not only indicates the adjustment to the crop-livestock system as an adaptation strategy to a severe typhoon, but it also is a warning about the contraction of crops production in the aftermath of this type of event.
    Keywords: Typhoon; Agriculture; Crops; Livestock; Vietnam
    JEL: O12 O13 Q12 Q15 Q54
    Date: 2021–05–06
  11. By: Adeola Oyenubi; Uma Kollamparambil
    Abstract: We consider the perverse incentive that can be created for poor households that are benefiting from the South African Child Support Grant (CSG). We acknowledge the fact that the CSG has been successful in improving child outcomes. However, if caregivers see the CSG as a livelihood strategy and respond with multiple births, this will jeopardize the fiscal sustainability of the transfer in the long run. Such incentive will also perpetuate poverty and inequality which will defeat the very purpose the CSG is meant to achieve.Using the National Income Dynamic Study (NIDS) data, we estimate the relationship between CSG receipt and birth attempts over the last decade using count data models. To control for selection, we use instrumental variable under the Control Function (CF) method. We also check the robustness of our result to alternative assumptions like fixed effects.Our result is robust over the different identification assumptions and shows that those who benefit from the CSG have had more birth attempts within the last decade when compared to non-beneficiaries.
    Keywords: social transfers, poverty, Provision and Effects of Welfare Programs
    JEL: I38 I32 I31 Q56 R23 D61
    Date: 2020–09
  12. By: Luis Fernando Gamboa, Jaime Millan-Quijano
    Abstract: This paper provides new evidence on the importance of short-run liquidity constraints in a tuition-free post- secondary education setting. We exploit two sources of exogenous variation in enrollment in free tertiary education to disentangle the role played by liquidity constraints, and show that eligibility for financial aid increases enrollment by 11.9 percentage points. We show that individuals with larger returns to education are more affected by the availability of grants. In contrast, when variation in enrollment is not derived from changes in the relative cost of education, compliers to such variation are not necessarily individuals with large returns to education. Our results support the hypothesis that low-income youths encounter liquidity constraints, even when entering free tertiary education.
    Keywords: Liquidity constraints, tertiary education, regression discontinuity.
    JEL: I26 C36 J21
    Date: 2021–05
  13. By: Kabeya Clement Mulamba
    Abstract: This paper investigates the relationship between the education level of household heads and households’ energy-saving practices at the micro-level in South Africa. It uses the community survey of 2016 as data source. Multilevel logistic models are estimated to account for heterogeneity that characterises the sample data due to the fact that households are nested within municipalities. The findings point to a significant and positive relationship between education level of household heads and households’ energy-saving practices. Based on these results, one can infer that a household whose head is educated is more likely to have light bulbs, switch off lights in the house when not in use, and switch off appliances at the wall (not with remotes) when not in use than household whose heads have no education. Therefore, education offers a tool to incentivise households to save electricity, which will also contribute indirectly to the effort of addressing the challenges of climate change, amongst others.
    Keywords: Households, electricity-saving, Education, municipal, South Africa
    JEL: C31 D21 R21 Q4
    Date: 2021–01
  14. By: Vanden Eynde, Oliver; Wren-Lewis, Liam
    Abstract: Complementarities between infrastructure projects have been understudied. Our paper examines interactions in the impacts of large-scale road construction, electrification, and mobile phone coverage programs in rural India. We find strong evidence of complementary impacts between roads and electricity on agricultural production: dry season cropping increases significantly when villages receive both, but not when they receive one without the other. These complementarities are associated with a shift of cropping patterns towards market crops and with improved economic conditions. In contrast, we find no consistent evidence of complementarities for the mobile coverage program.
    Keywords: Infrastructure, India, Complementarities, Roads, Mobile phone
    Date: 2021–05
  15. By: Elvis Avenyo; Fiona Tregenna
    Abstract: Industrialisation is recognised as important for developing countries’ growth and ‘catching up’ with advanced economies, but is also associated with harmful carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions and hence with climate change. This poses a challenge to sustainable development, particularly for late industrialisers: how to industrialise while also mitigating CO2 emissions. This paper investigates the effect of technology intensity in manufacturing on CO2 emissions: is high-technology manufacturing less emitting than medium-technology and, in turn, low-technology manufacturing? We analyse this for a panel of 56 developing economies over the period 1991 to 2014, estimated using generalised method of moments (GMM). Methodologically, we adapt and synthesise the environmental Kuznets curve (EKC) and the stochastic effect by regression on population, affluence and technology (STIRPAT) approaches. We utilise two alternative measures of emissions: absolute and per capita volumes. Our results show that medium- and high-technology manufacturing are associated with higher emissions than low-technology manufacturing. In relation to the technology intensity of manufacturing exports, we find high-technology manufacturing to be associated with lower emissions than medium-technology manufacturing, and in turn low-technology manufacturing. These findings have important policy implications, suggesting that a shift towards more technology-intensive manufacturing may be a more environmentally sustainable industrialisation path for developing countries.
    Keywords: carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, industrialisation, manufacturing, Technology, developing countries
    JEL: F18 O13 O14 O33 Q01 Q54 Q56
    Date: 2021–01
  16. By: Arief Anshory Yusuf; Putri Riswani Halim
    Abstract: This paper analyses the labour market dynamics in Indonesia from 2001 to 2015 and explores the role of the changing nature of occupational employment in explaining the rising earnings inequality during the same period. First, we find evidence of a disproportionate increase in the returns to tertiary education, the increasing shares of highly skilled and elementary workers, and a sign of job polarization. Second, we find evidence of job polarization in the periods 2005-10 and 2005-15.
    Keywords: Labour market dynamics, Inequality, Occupations, Employment, Earnings inequality
    Date: 2021
  17. By: Yasuharu Shimamura (Graduate School of International Cooperation Studies, Kobe University); Satoshi Shimizutani (JICA Ogata Sadako Research Institute for Peace and Development); Shimpei Taguchi (JICA Ogata Sadako Research Institute for Peace and Development, Research Program Division); Hiroyuki Yamada (Faculty of Economics, Keio University)
    Abstract: Access to safe water sources remains scarce in sub-Saharan African countries. We estimate the economic value of safe water from newly constructed boreholes in rural Zambia. Our quasi-experimental setting allows us to estimate the revealed preference measure of new safe water sources in a causal way, empowered by precise information on water collection and distance to new facilities. We show that the share of time value for water collection in total expenditures was about 5 percent at the baseline survey, which was reduced to 1.6 percent at the end-line survey, but the difference-indifferences analysis reveals that the project did not reduce the time burden for collecting water due to the greater demand for safe water. Moreover, we estimate the economic benefits of the project stemming from the significant reduction of diarrhea incidence. By estimating the economic value of a reduction in days lost due to diarrhea and a decrease in age-standardized disability-adjusted life years (DALYs), the internal rate of return (IRR) is estimated to be 14.2 percent, which is highly likely to be the lowest boundary of the actual IRR.
    Keywords: Nonmarket valuation; revealed preference; time use; borehole; groundwater development
    JEL: I38 J22 O18
    Date: 2021–04–30
  18. By: Andrew Kerr
    Abstract: Overall income inequality in South Africa is very high, and inequality generated in the labour market is a key driver of inequality. In this paper, I use the Post-Apartheid Labour Market Series, the General Household Surveys, and administrative tax microdata to describe earnings inequality in South Africa. I estimate Gini coefficients, the variance of log earnings, and various percentile ratios to document changes in earnings inequality.
    Keywords: Inequality, Earnings, Tax data, Administrative data, Survey data, South Africa
    Date: 2021
  19. By: Kajari Saha (Indira Gandhi Institute of Development Research)
    Abstract: This study provides new evidence on the debate surrounding international trade and the gender wage gap in a developing country context. It asks whether increased competition from trade has any causal effect on the district-level gender wage gap in India. Changes in competition from trade are measured using changes in imports from China, owing to the dramatic rise in Chinese imports into India in recent years. An instrumental variable (IV) based estimation strategy is used following Autor, Dorn, and anson (2016), to delineate causality. Results indicate a positive and statistically significant impact of an increase in Chinese imports on the gender wage gap over time. In addition to the economy-wide ample of workers, this effect holds true for the sub-samples of casual laborers and rural sector workers where the majority of women workers in India are concentrated. Unlike previous studies using industry-level data, the district-level focus of this study allows us to capture micro-level effects, as well as the net effects of trade in the surrounding district.
    Keywords: International trade, Gender wage gap, Competition, Imports, China, District
    JEL: F16 D63 J16 J31
    Date: 2021–04

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