nep-dev New Economics Papers
on Development
Issue of 2022‒08‒15
seventeen papers chosen by
Jacob A. Jordaan
Universiteit Utrecht

  1. A Shot at Economic Prosperity: Long-Term Effects of India's Childhood Immunization Program on Earnings and Consumption Expenditure By Summan, Amit; Nandi, Arindam; Bloom, David E.
  2. (Mis-)information technology: Internet use and perception of democracy in Africa By Joël Cariolle; Yasmine Elkhateeb; Mathilde Maurel
  3. Global food price surge, in-kind transfers, and household welfare evidence from India By Digvijay S. Negi
  4. Agricultural shocks, coping policies and deforestation: evidence from the coffee leaf rust epidemic in mexico By Isabelle Chort; Berk Öktem
  5. A Random Forest approach of the Evolution of Inequality of Opportunity in Mexico By Thibaut Plassot; Isidro Soloaga; Pedro J. Torres
  6. A natural resource curse: the unintended effects of gold mining on malaria By Pagel, Jeff
  7. Growing Up Together: Sibling Correlation, Parental Influence, and Intergenerational Educational Mobility in Developing Countries By Ahsan, Md. Nazmul; Emran, M. Shahe; Jiang, Hanchen; Han, Qingyang; Shilpi, Forhad
  8. Household Welfare Effects of ROSCAs By Pushkar Maitra; Ray Miller; Ashish Sedai
  9. Does Hotter Temperature Increase Poverty? Global Evidence from Subnational Data Analysis By Dang, Hai-Anh H.; Trinh, Trong-Anh
  10. Living standards in settler South Africa, 1865-1920 By Johan Fourie; Kris Inwood; Martine Mariotti
  11. Can collective property rights foster development? Evidence from a quasi-natural experiment in Colombia By Joaquín Daniel Ramírez-Cabarcas
  12. A new beginning: The effect of the free housing program on the quality of life of beneficiary households By Adriana Camacho-González; Jorge Enrique Caputo-Leyva; Fabio Sánchez-Torres
  13. A National Information Campaign Encouraging Financial Technology Use in Ghana By Emma Riley; Abu S. Shonchoy
  14. COVID-19 and extreme weather: Impacts on food security and migration attitudes in rural Guatemala By Ceballos, Francisco; Hernandez, Manuel A.; Paz, Cynthia
  15. Inequalities in Job Loss and Income Loss in Sub-Saharan Africa during the COVID-19 Crisis By Contreras-Gonzalez, Ivette; Oseni, Gbemisola; Palacios-Lopez, Amparo; Pieters, Janneke; Weber, Michael
  16. Climate change adaptation and productive efficiency of subsistence farming: A bias-corrected panel data stochastic frontier approach By Asmare, Fissha; Jaraitė, Jūratė; Kažukauskas, Andrius
  17. The Indian Enigma revisited By Von Grafenstein, Liza; Klasen, Stephan; Hoddinott, John

  1. By: Summan, Amit (One Health Trust); Nandi, Arindam (The Population Council); Bloom, David E. (Harvard University)
    Abstract: Routine childhood vaccinations are among the most cost-effective interventions. In recent years, the broader benefits of vaccines, which include improved cognitive and schooling outcomes, have also been established. This paper evaluates the long-term economic benefits of India's national program of childhood vaccinations, known as the Universal Immunization Programme (UIP). We combine individual-level data from the 68th round of the National Sample Survey of India (2011–2012) with district-wise data on the rollout of UIP in 1985–1990. We employ age-district fixed effects regression models to compare the earnings and per capita household consumer spending of 21- to 26-year-old adults who were born in UIP-covered districts vis-à-vis non-UIP districts in 1985–1990. We find that exposure to UIP in infancy increases weekly wages by 13.8% (95% CI: 7.6% to 20.3%, p
    Keywords: India, child immunization, health, wages
    JEL: I15 I18 J31 J38
    Date: 2022–06
  2. By: Joël Cariolle (Fondation pour les Etudes et Recherches sur le Développement International (FERDI)); Yasmine Elkhateeb (Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne, Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne and Cairo University); Mathilde Maurel (Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne, Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne, CNRS, FERDI)
    Abstract: This paper investigates the impact of internet use as a means of accessing news on African citizens' demand for and perception of the supply of democracy. This question is addressed using cross-sectional data from the last three rounds of the Afrobarometer survey for a sample of 25 African countries between 2011 and 2018. Using an instrumental variable approach to control for the possible endogeneity bias between internet use and citizens'perceptions, we found that using the internet to get news has a negative and significant effect on the demand for and on the perceived supply of democracy. The negative effect is channeled through two main factors. The first factor is the confidence in governments and governmental institutions, which is undermined by the use of the internet. In particular, we find that this internet-induced lower confidence translates into a higher probability of engaging in street protests instead of increased political participation. The second driving factor is the (mis-)information channel. On the one hand, we show that internet users' perception of the supply of democracy negatively diverges from experts' ratings. On the other hand, we document further that internet use increases the likelihood of incoherence in the respondent's stance about her demand for democracy. Finally, we show that the negative effect we found is mitigated when the internet is complemented by traditional media sources, especially the radio, to get informed. The findings of this study suggest that internet use is not neutral and tends to undermine citizens' preferences for democracy and alter perceptions about the functioning of political institutions
    Keywords: Internet news; democracy; Africa
    JEL: D72 D83 L86 P16
    Date: 2022–03
  3. By: Digvijay S. Negi (Indira Gandhi Institute of Development Research)
    Abstract: This paper studies the impact of high global food prices on household welfare in India. I use the 2007-08 surge in global food prices and household share of area under rice and wheat at the baseline to show that food cultivating households gain from high prices. These welfare gains mainly accrue to net food producers. I observe that net food producer households were able to maintain their per capita spending and consumption of rice and wheat by decreasing consumption of market purchased rice and wheat and increasing consumption of government- subsidized rice and wheat. Net consumer households, on the other hand, experienced a decline in the total per capita consumption of rice and wheat even though they substituted their market purchases with homegrown produce and subsidized grains. The role of in-kind food transfers in insulating households from high prices was evident for both net producers and consumers. Finally, high prices induced working-age adult males in net food-producing households to increase work days and hours worked per day on their own farm and reallocated labor from market wage work to labor on their own farm.
    Keywords: Global food prices, net producers, in-kind transfers, welfare, India
    JEL: O12 I38 Q18
    Date: 2022–06
  4. By: Isabelle Chort (TREE - Transitions Energétiques et Environnementales - UPPA - Université de Pau et des Pays de l'Adour - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, IUF - Institut Universitaire de France - M.E.N.E.S.R. - Ministère de l'Education nationale, de l’Enseignement supérieur et de la Recherche); Berk Öktem (TREE - Transitions Energétiques et Environnementales - UPPA - Université de Pau et des Pays de l'Adour - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)
    Abstract: Deforestation in the tropics is a critical issue that interacts with global environmental changes, and the mediating role of negative agricultural shocks is ambiguous. We investigate the impact of the massive epidemic of coffee leaf rust (CLR) that affected Central America from 2012 on deforestation in Mexico. CLR is a fungal disease that negatively affects coffee production. We exploit the gradual and random diffusion of the epidemic across coffee-growing municipalities and estimate a difference-indifference model. We find that deforestation increased by 32% in CLR-affected municipalities but we find no increase in agricultural land. Effects are driven by municipalities with low coffee yields, characterizing shade coffee systems, and states where rustic coffee systems were predominant. These results suggest that deforestation occurred within coffee cultivation areas and point out the concurrent role of government subsidies and incentives through the PROCAFE program, launched in 2014, that promoted the replacement of traditional coffee trees by CLR-resistant hybrids. We study the dynamic effects of CLR and exploit the delayed launch of PROCAFE to try to disentangle the impact of the epidemic from that of the policy response. Our results emphasize the vulnerability of agroforestry systems to exogenous shocks and suggest that PROCAFE, as a short-term response to CLR, contributed to increasing deforestation and accelerating the transition of Mexican traditional coffee landscapes to monoculture.
    Keywords: deforestation,coffee,Mexico,climate change,land use,agroforestry systems,government policies
    Date: 2022–07–11
  5. By: Thibaut Plassot (Universidad Iberoamericana, Mexico City: Department of Economics); Isidro Soloaga (Universidad Iberoamericana, Mexico City: Department of Economics); Pedro J. Torres (Universidad Iberoamericana, Mexico City: Department of Economics)
    Abstract: This work presents the trend of Inequality of Opportunity (IOp) and total inequality in wealth in Mexico for the years 2006, 2011 and 2017, and provides estimations using both an ex-ante and ex-post compensation criterion. We resort on a data-driven approach using supervised machine learning models to run regression trees and random forests that consider individuals’ circumstances and effort. We find an intensification of both total inequality and IOp between 2006 and 2011, as well as a reduction of these between 2011 and 2017, being absolute IOp slightly higher in 2017 than in 2006. From an ex-ante perspective, the share of IOp within total inequality slightly decreased although using an ex-post perspective the share remains stable across time. The most important variable in determining IOp is household´s wealth at age 14, followed by both, father´s and mother´s education. Other variables such as the ability of the parents to speak an indigenous language proved to have had a lower impact over time.
    Keywords: Inequality Of Opportunity, Mexico, Shapley Decomposition, Random Forests
    JEL: C14 C81 D31 D63
    Date: 2022–06
  6. By: Pagel, Jeff
    Abstract: This paper studies whether extractive resource activities provoke an ecological response on the emergence and proliferation of malaria by altering the reproductive environment of mosquitoes. In January 2004, the government of the Philippines launched the Minerals Action Plan (MAP) with the goal of revitalizing the mining sector, which significantly reduced the average lag between application and grant of a mining permit. I exploit the timing of the reform and the spatial distribution of mineral endowments through a difference-in-differences (DID) approach that compares provinces with and without gold deposits before and after the reform. After the MAP reform, provinces with deposits of gold had 32 percent more malaria cases relative to provinces without gold deposits. Additionally, the impact on malaria appears to be persistent 10 years beyond the implementation of the policy. I perform several falsification tests as well as investigate other potential mechanisms to further suggest that the main mechanism is through gold mining’s creation of slow-moving bodies of stagnant water, which provide an ideal breeding site for Anopheles mosquitoes, malaria’s main transmission vector, to propagate and reproduce.
    Keywords: natural resource curse; malaria; extractive resources; health and economic development
    JEL: Q32 Q57 I18
    Date: 2022–05–10
  7. By: Ahsan, Md. Nazmul; Emran, M. Shahe; Jiang, Hanchen; Han, Qingyang; Shilpi, Forhad
    Abstract: We present credible and comparable evidence on intergenerational educational mobility in 53 developing countries using sibling correlation as a measure, and data from 230 waves of Demographic and Health Surveys (DHS). This is the first paper, to our knowledge, to provide estimates of sibling correlation in schooling for a large number of developing countries using high quality standardized data. Sibling correlation is an omnibus measure of mobility as it captures observed and unobserved family, community, and school factors shared by siblings when growing up together. The estimates suggest that sibling correlation in schooling in developing countries is much higher (average 0.59) than that in developed countries (average 0.41). There is substantial spatial heterogeneity across regions, Latin America and Caribbean with the highest (0.65) and Europe and Central Asia with the lowest (0.48) estimates. Country level heterogeneity within a region is more pronounced. The evolution of sibling correlation suggests a variety of mobility experiences, with some regions registering a monotonically declining trend from the 1970s birth cohort to the 1990s birth cohort (Latin America and Caribbean and East Asia and Pacific), while others remained trapped in stagnancy (South Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa). The only region that experienced monotonically increasing sibling correlation is Middle East and North Africa. We take advantage of the recent approach of Bingley and Cappellari (2019) to estimate the share of sibling correlation due to intergenerational transmission. We find that relaxing the homogeneity and independence assumptions implicit in the standard model of intergenerational transmission makes the estimated share much larger. In our sample of countries, on average 74 percent of sibling correlation can be attributed to intergenerational transmission, while there are some countries where the share is more than 80 percent (most in Sub-Saharan Africa). This suggests a dominant role for the parents in determining educational opportunities of children. Evidence on the evolution of the intergenerational share, however, suggests a declining importance of the intergenerational transmission component in many countries, but the pattern is very diverse. In some cases, the trend in the intergenerational share is opposite to the trend in sibling correlation.
    Keywords: Sibling Correlation,Intergenerational Mobility,Education,Years of Schooling,Developing Countries,Intergenerational Share,Decomposition,DHS
    JEL: J0 D3 J62
    Date: 2022
  8. By: Pushkar Maitra (Department of Economics, Monash University); Ray Miller (Department of Economics, Colorado State University); Ashish Sedai (Department of Economics, College of Business, University of Texas at Arlington)
    Abstract: We examine the effects of Rotating Savings and Credit Associations (ROSCAs) on house- hold welfare in India. The identification strategy is based on household fixed effects and instrumental variables (using the geographic leave-one-out instrument). We find that ROSCA membership increases household assets, consumption, energy efficiency and school expenditure, but only in rural areas. Welfare effects are stronger for poorer households and for those living in communities with stronger social ties. We argue that the persistence and success of ROSCAs depends on social ties, which are often stronger in rural communities.
    Keywords: ROSCA, Household Welfare, Community Bonding
    JEL: O12 C26 C33
    Date: 2022–07
  9. By: Dang, Hai-Anh H.; Trinh, Trong-Anh
    Abstract: Despite a vast literature documenting the negative effects of climate change on various socio-economic outcomes, surprisingly hardly any evidence exists on the global impacts of hotter temperature on poverty. Analyzing a new global dataset of subnational poverty in 166 countries, we find higher temperature to increase poverty. This finding is robust to various model specifications, data samples, and measures of temperature. Our preferred specification shows that a 1°C increase leads to a 2.1 percent increase in the headcount poverty rate, using the US$ 1.90 daily poverty threshold. Regional heterogeneity exists, with Sub-Saharan African countries being most vulnerable to higher temperature. We find suggestive evidence that reduction in crop yields could be a key channel that explains the effects of rising temperature. Further simulation indicates that global warming can significantly increase poverty, with more pronounced effects occurring in poorer regions and under scenarios of higher greenhouse gas emissions without mitigation policies.
    Keywords: climate change,global warming,poverty,agriculture,subnational data
    JEL: Q54 I32 O1
    Date: 2022
  10. By: Johan Fourie; Kris Inwood; Martine Mariotti
    Abstract: We construct an anthropometric measure of living standards for White South Africans covering 55 years using five different military sources. Accounting for different selection across the forces, we find that prior to industrialisation, White South African males were amongst the tallest in the world. Rural living standards declined in response to natural disasters in the 1880s and 90s with those with the lowest living standards moving off the land and into the cities. We find a slight improvement in living standards after 1900 across all regions and occupations. During industrialisation, White males in South Africa continued to exhibit the highest living standards in the world as represented by their stature. Convergence to other nations in the early twentieth century shows, however, that while there may have been no industrialisation penalty, industrialisation did not lift living standards the way it did elsewhere.
    Keywords: anthropometric, South Africa, stature, height, living standards
    Date: 2022–07
  11. By: Joaquín Daniel Ramírez-Cabarcas
    Abstract: I estimate the effect of collective property rights on development in rural Colombia in the context of a case study. In the 1990s, the Colombian government started one of the most ambitious land re-orderings in Latin America, which titled collective property rights to Afro-Colombian communities throughout the Colombian Pacific. I take advantage of a historical accident in these titling processes, which delayed the collective land titling of one community for 16 years until November 2015, one year after the Colombian National Agricultural Census 2014 (CNA). With the CNA data, I use the delayed community as counterfactual for its titled neighbours, and use spatial regression discontinuity with the borders between communities, largely determined by proximity to river basins. In the context of this case study, I find that farms in collectively titled communities have higher agricultural yield by 6 percentage points, devote more farm area share to perennial crops by 28 percentage points, and have 18 percentage points higher school attendance. I suggest these results could be a consequence of a higher motivation of farmers in titled territories to invest in their land, along with collective forms of production to provide labor among poor farmers.
    Keywords: Property rights, Communal lands, Land reform
    JEL: P48 P32 Q15
    Date: 2022–07–22
  12. By: Adriana Camacho-González; Jorge Enrique Caputo-Leyva; Fabio Sánchez-Torres
    Abstract: This paper analyzes the effect of the Free Housing Program (PVG) on the well-being of beneficiary households. This program is an initiative of the Colombian Government to provide free houses to the most vulnerable households in the country. To estimate causal impacts of the program, we exploit that 38% of the beneficiaries were selected through housing lotteries. We show that most of recipients still reside in the houses provided in the program (5-6 years after the housing lotteries), which have adequate conditions of structure, space, and access to public services. Also, we show that program improves the labor conditions of beneficiary households, either through greater labor participation (in women), or by changing the type of work or economic sector (in men) and even earning more income (both). As a result of the previous impacts, the beneficiary households were able to restructure their expenses, acquire more durable goods, save more money, and escape extreme poverty. The main mechanism that explains these results is that the beneficiaries were relocated to places with a greater provision of public goods, closer proximity to complementary services and more economic activity.
    Keywords: free public housing, poverty, employment, income
    JEL: I38 J22 O18 R28 R31
    Date: 2022–07–19
  13. By: Emma Riley (University of Washington); Abu S. Shonchoy (Department of Economics, Florida International University)
    Abstract: We utilise high-frequency “interactive voice response (IVR)†messages to encourage adoption of mobile banking technology in Ghana. We randomise 15,000 bank clients equally to receive messages on a) mobile banking encouragement (MB-IVR); b) savings encouragement (Savings-IVR); or c) control (no messages). Analysis using administrative records shows signiï¬ cant impacts of MB-IVR, tripling mobile banking use from 2.4% in the control group, with persisting effects measured at ï¬ ve-month post-intervention period. We see improvements in ï¬ nancial behaviour: The MB-IVR groups are 8% more likely to repay loans on-time, and 11% less likely to travel to the bank. There is no impact of Savings-IVR.
    Date: 2022–05
  14. By: Ceballos, Francisco; Hernandez, Manuel A.; Paz, Cynthia
    Abstract: This paper examines the continuing effects of COVID-19 and exposure to weather extremes on income, dietary, and migration outcomes in rural Guatemala. We rely on a comprehensive longitudinal survey of 1,612 smallholder farmers collected over three survey rounds in 2019, 2020, and 2021. We find improvements in incomes, food security, and dietary diversity in 2021 relative to 2020, but with levels still below pre-pandemic ones in 2019. We also find a substantial increase in the intention to emigrate that was not observed in the onset of the pandemic. In terms of the channels mediating the variations in dietary diversity and migration intentions, income shocks seem to have played a role, in contrast to direct exposure to the virus, local mobility restrictions, and food market disruptions. Importantly, households exposed to ETA and IOTA tropical storms, in addition to COVID-19, were considerably more prone to exhibit larger increases in the prevalence of moderate or severe food insecure episodes and larger decreases in their diet quality. The study provides novel evidence on vulnerable households’ wellbeing in the aftermath of a global crisis, including the effects of compound shocks.
    Keywords: GUATEMALA; LATIN AMERICA; CENTRAL AMERICA; NORTH AMERICA; Coronavirus; coronavirus disease; Coronavirinae; COVID-19; weather; extreme weather events; food security; migration; rural areas; shock; households
    Date: 2022
  15. By: Contreras-Gonzalez, Ivette (World Bank); Oseni, Gbemisola (World Bank); Palacios-Lopez, Amparo (World Bank); Pieters, Janneke (Wageningen University); Weber, Michael (World Bank)
    Abstract: We use high frequency phone survey data from Ethiopia, Malawi, Nigeria, and Uganda to analyze the impacts of the COVID-19 crisis on work (including wage employment, self-employment, and farm work) and income, as well as heterogeneity by gender, family composition, education, age, pre-COVID-19 industry of work, and between the rural and urban sector. We link phone survey data collected throughout the pandemic to pre-COVID-19 face-to-face survey data in order to track the employment of respondents who were working before the pandemic and analyze individual level indicators of job loss and re-employment. Finally, we analyze both immediate impacts, during the first few months of the pandemic, as well as longer-run impacts up to February/March 2021. We find that in the early phase of the pandemic, women, young, and urban workers were significantly more likely to lose their job. A year after the onset of the pandemic, these inequalities disappeared while education became the main predictor of joblessness. We find significant rural/urban, age, and education gradients in household level income loss. Households with income from non-farm enterprises were most likely to report income loss, in the short run as well as the longer run.
    Keywords: COVID-19, employment, income, inequality, Africa
    JEL: J20 J10 I31
    Date: 2022–07
  16. By: Asmare, Fissha; Jaraitė, Jūratė; Kažukauskas, Andrius
    Abstract: We explore the impact of climate change adaptation on the technical efficiency of Ethiopian farmers using panel data collected from 6,820 farm plots. We employ Green's (2010) stochastic frontier approach and propensity score matching to address selection bias. Our results reveal that climate change adaptation improves the efficiency of maize, wheat, and barley production. We also show that failure to account for selection bias underestimates the average efficiency level. Our findings imply that the expansion of climate change adaptation at larger scales will provide a double benefit by curbing climate-related risks and increasing the efficiency of farmers. Moreover, increasing credit access and introducing mechanisms that allow farmers to get enough amount of water during the main growing season will enhance the efficiency of subsistence farmers.
    Keywords: Crop Production/Industries, Risk and Uncertainty
    Date: 2022–04
  17. By: Von Grafenstein, Liza; Klasen, Stephan; Hoddinott, John
    Abstract: This paper re-enters the contested discussion surrounding the Indian Enigma, the high prevalence of chronic undernutrition in India relative to sub-Saharan Africa. Jayachandran & Pande argue that the key to the Indian enigma lies in the worse treatment of higher birth order children, particularly girls. Analyzing new data, we find: (1) Parameter estimates are sensitive to sampling design and model specification; (2) The gap between the heights of pre-school African and Indian children is closing; (3) The gap does not appear to be driven by differential associations by birth order and child sex; (4) The remaining gap is associated with differences in maternal heights. If Indian women had the heights of their African counterparts, pre-school Indian children would be taller than pre-school African children; and (5) Once we account for survey design, sibling size and maternal height, the coefficient associated with being an Indian girl is no longer statistically significant.
    Keywords: Food Consumption/Nutrition/Food Safety, Health Economics and Policy, Institutional and Behavioral Economics, Labor and Human Capital, Research Methods/ Statistical Methods
    Date: 2022–06

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