nep-dev New Economics Papers
on Development
Issue of 2022‒10‒03
thirteen papers chosen by
Jacob A. Jordaan
Universiteit Utrecht

  1. Race, Gender and Poverty: Evidence from Brazilian Data By Yeutseyeva, Sasha; Deguilhem, Thibaud
  2. The external effects of public housing developments on informal housing: The case of Medellín, Colombia By Posada, Hector M.; García-Suaza, Andrés; Londoño, David
  3. Mobile health interventions: A policymakers’ note on the World’s largest Nutrition Surveillance in India By Pal, Sumantra
  4. Can food aid relax farmers’ constraints to adopting climate-adaptive agricultural practices? Evidence from Ethiopia, Malawi and the United Republic of Tanzania By Ignaciuk, Ada; Malevolti, Giulia; Scognamillo, Antonio; Sitko, Nicholas J.
  5. Reducing vulnerability to weather shocks through social protection – Evidence from the implementation of Productive Safety Net Programme (PSNP) in Ethiopia By Scognamillo, Antonio; Mastrorillo, Marina; Ignaciuk, Ada
  6. The Effect of Health Insurance on Child Nutritional Outcomes. Evidence from a Regression Discontinuity Design in Peru By Bernal, Noelia; Costa-Font, Joan; Ritter, Patricia
  7. Enhancing refugees’ self-reliance in Uganda – The role of cash and food assistance By Mastrorillo, Marina; Scognamillo, Antonio; Ginet, Camille; Pietrelli, Rebecca; d’Errico, Marco; Ignaciuk, Adriana
  8. Determinants of government debt in sub-Saharan African countries: the role of conflict, governance, and economic factors By Princewill U. Okwoche; Eftychia Nikolaidou
  9. Intergenerational Mobility of Economic Well-being in Latin America By Guido Neidhöfer; Matías Ciaschi; Leonardo Gasparini
  10. Effects of Anti-Corruption Audits on Early-Life Mortality: Evidence from Brazil By Antonio P. Ramos; Simeon Nichter; Leiwen Gao; Gustavo J. Bobonis
  11. Trust Institutions, Perceptions of Economic Performance and the Mitigating role of Political Diversity By Samba Diop; Simplice A. Asongu
  12. Trade Disruption and Risk Perception By KASHIWAGI Yuzuka; TODO Yasuyuki
  13. What contribution of agroecology to job creation in sub-Saharan Africa? The case of horticulture in the Niayes, Senegal By Esther Laske; Sandrine Michel

  1. By: Yeutseyeva, Sasha; Deguilhem, Thibaud
    Abstract: Race and gender are commonly considerated as two of the most important structural factors associated with unequal socioeconomic systems. Previous research has found that these factors are significant for explaining the income inequality in Latin America and particularly in Brazil. This study aims to address whether both determinants predict an individual’s chances of being in poverty in Brazil, using national dataset and articulating different econometric strategies. Overall, being a woman had a small positive impact on an individual’s predicted chance of poverty and only in a probability linear specification. We think that this result does not align well with previous literature because of the selection bias affecting women labor market participation. However, evidence of strong and robust racial differenciation in Brazil was present. Discussing the representativeness of the sample, this study highlights the importance of data quality as well as the relevance of using various statistical methods.
    Keywords: Brazil, poverty, race, gender, inequality
    JEL: J15 J16 N96
    Date: 2022–08–31
  2. By: Posada, Hector M.; García-Suaza, Andrés; Londoño, David
    Abstract: Provision of new subsidized housing projects has proven to be an effective alternative to reduce the high level of quantitative housing deficit in developing countries. However less is known about how these housing projects affect the quality of the surrounding habitat, especially when projects are located in areas with high levels of precarious housing. Using highly granular public information from Medellin, Colombia, we estimate the causal effect of new social housing projects (VIS) on housing quality indicators in the neighborhood. To estimate this causal effect, we use the geological quality of the land as an instrumental variable for a measure of exposition to new social housing projects. Our results show that new VIS projects lead to a reduction of informal housing, poverty, and crime in the neighborhood.
    Keywords: Public housing; Informal housing; Neighborhoods; Developing country
    JEL: R23 R31 R58
    Date: 2022–09
  3. By: Pal, Sumantra
    Abstract: India’s first-generation and short-lived nutrition surveillance pilot (called ICDS-CAS) launched in 2018 was dismantled and replaced by a second-generation program (called POSHAN 2.0) in 2021. To estimate the relative effectiveness of 18 services provided by the frontline workers using ICDA-CAS, I approach its geographically phased-out pilot as a natural experiment, exploiting the quasi-random district-level assignment of ICDS-CAS and interventions. I access the publicly unavailable telephonic survey data collected during spring 2021 from the World Bank. It covers 1100 pregnant women and 3300 lactating mothers in 124 randomly sampled districts from 11 populous Indian states. I find that the adherence to recommended iron supplementation is 33 percentage points higher for pregnant women, who received information, messages, and counselling from the frontline health workers in districts which implemented ICDS-CAS. For lactating mothers, who attended a village health and nutrition day event, the impact on iron supplementation is 9 percentage points greater if they were residing in ICDS-CAS districts. The data suggests that the remaining interventions are not effective. Feature comparison of both the programs suggests that India’s second-generation nutrition surveillance is more diligently designed than its predecessor, hence more promising.
    Keywords: maternal health,service delivery,mobile phones,India
    JEL: I12 I15
    Date: 2022
  4. By: Ignaciuk, Ada; Malevolti, Giulia; Scognamillo, Antonio; Sitko, Nicholas J.
    Abstract: The adoption of climate-adaptive agricultural practices (CAAPs) among resource-poor smallholder households is typically hindered by liquidity and risk constraints. Using an inverse probability weighted estimator that uses three waves of nationally representative panel survey data from Ethiopia, Malawi and the United Republic of Tanzania, this article examines whether food transfers help overcome barriers to the adoption of selected CAAPs. The results show that in each country analysed, receiving food transfers increase the probability of adopting at least one CAAP.
    Keywords: Agricultural and Food Policy, Food Security and Poverty, Risk and Uncertainty
    Date: 2022–05–16
  5. By: Scognamillo, Antonio; Mastrorillo, Marina; Ignaciuk, Ada
    Abstract: This paper uncovers the mechanisms shaping the impact of the public work component of Ethiopia’s Productive Safety Net Program (PSNP) on beneficiaries and communities’ food security and vulnerability to various shocks. From a policy perspective, the empirical findings recommend explicitly integrating environmental and climate considerations to design social protection programmes which target poor agricultural households highly vulnerable to weather shocks.
    Keywords: Agricultural and Food Policy, Food Security and Poverty, Risk and Uncertainty
    Date: 2022–08–01
  6. By: Bernal, Noelia (Universidad de Piura); Costa-Font, Joan (London School of Economics); Ritter, Patricia (University of Connecticut)
    Abstract: We study the effect of health insurance expansion on nutrition-related children's health outcomes. We exploit quasi-random variation from an insurance expansion targeted at poor households in Peru. We find that access to insurance reduces childhood obesity and exerts positive and economically significant effects on some preventive health care utilization and behaviours, such as children's regular growth checks-ups and deworming treatments, the duration of breastfeeding, and a substitution of foods rich in carbohydrates for other foods rich in proteins. In contrast, we do not find any effect on other outcomes typically related to other interventions.
    Keywords: children’s health, obesity, overweight, public health insurance, health behaviors, nutrition, breast-feeding
    JEL: J13
    Date: 2022–08
  7. By: Mastrorillo, Marina; Scognamillo, Antonio; Ginet, Camille; Pietrelli, Rebecca; d’Errico, Marco; Ignaciuk, Adriana
    Abstract: Social protection transfers are the most widespread measures adopted to stabilize refugee households’ livelihoods and alleviate their food insecurity. This paper contributes to the literature on the effectiveness of different types of support on livelihoods and productivity outcomes of one of the largest refugee populations in Africa. Taking advantage of a unique panel dataset representative of the largest part of the 1.4 million people hosted in the Uganda refugees’ settlements, this paper investigates how different social protection interventions (cash and food) are effective in alleviating food insecurity and in contributing to beneficiaries’ self-reliance. The results show that the effectiveness of transfers depends on beneficiaries’ characteristics, on context specificity, and on the outcome assessed.
    Keywords: Agricultural Finance, Community/Rural/Urban Development, Food Security and Poverty
    Date: 2022–09–11
  8. By: Princewill U. Okwoche (School of Economics, University of Cape Town); Eftychia Nikolaidou (School of Economics, University of Cape Town)
    Abstract: In recent years, there have been growing concerns around the implications of large fiscal imbalances in sub-Saharan African countries (SSA). An ongoing debate focuses, among other things, on the determinants of public debt in the sub-region. Much of the recent work has, however, employed descriptive methods in quantifying the extent of the debt problem and in explaining the drivers thereof. Moreover, most studies only consider macroeconomic factors. Instead of focusing only on macroeconomic factors, this study considers the influence of conflict and governance. It employs a variety of panel methods, namely, the pooled OLS, one- and two-way fixed effects, and instrumental variables fixed effects to facilitate the comparison of results. The study finds compelling evidence showing that conflict and governance are important determinants of SSA's public debt in addition to the economic factors. Policy recommendations based on the findings are discussed.
    Date: 2022
  9. By: Guido Neidhöfer (ZEW Mannheim & CEDLAS-IIE-FCE-UNLP); Matías Ciaschi (CEDLAS-IIE-FCE-UNLP & CONICET); Leonardo Gasparini (CEDLAS-IIE-FCE-UNLP & CONICET)
    Abstract: We estimate, for the first time, long-run trends in intergenerational economic mobility for a multitude of countries in Latin America going beyond parent-child correlations in educational attainment. We use several indicators of well-being, such as the socio-economic situation of individuals, job stability, homeownership and assets. Unlike estimates based on education, which mostly show increasing social mobility trends, we find that opportunities to achieve a certain level of economic well-being and climb up the social ladder are rather unequally distributed and have not changed much over time in Latin America.
    JEL: D63 I24 J62 O15
    Date: 2022–09
  10. By: Antonio P. Ramos; Simeon Nichter; Leiwen Gao; Gustavo J. Bobonis
    Abstract: Although various studies suggest that corruption affects public health systems, the literature lacks causal evidence about whether anti-corruption interventions can improve health outcomes. The present article provides novel evidence that one such intervention — anti-corruption audits — improved early-life mortality in Brazil. The Brazilian government conducted audits in 1,949 randomly selected municipalities between 2003 and 2015. To identify the causal effect of anti-corruption audits on early-life mortality, we analyze official data on health outcomes from individual-level vital statistics before and after the intervention. A randomly audited municipality is estimated to experience 0.48 fewer child deaths (95% CI: -0.81, -0.15) and 0.34 fewer infant deaths (-0.61, -0.07) per year, relative to never experiencing an audit. The audit program is estimated to have prevented the deaths of 7,014 (2,216, 11,813) children, including 5,028 (891, 9,165) infants. The observed mortality in audited municipalities is approximately 94 percent of the child deaths, and 95 percent of the infant deaths, that would have occurred in the absence of the intervention. Early-life mortality fell especially sharply for nonwhite Brazilians, who face significant health disparities. Effects are greater when examining deaths from preventable causes, and show temporal persistence with large effects even a decade after audits. In addition, the intervention led to a substantial increase in women receiving recommended levels of prenatal care; this effect is likewise concentrated among nonwhite Brazilians. This causal evidence suggests that government anti-corruption interventions have the potential to improve health outcomes, a finding that deserves investigation in other countries.
    Keywords: Corruption; Program Evaluation; Child Health; Infant Mortality; Child Mortality
    JEL: O11 O54 I15 P16
    Date: 2022–09–04
  11. By: Samba Diop (Alioune Diop University, Bambey, Senegal); Simplice A. Asongu (Yaoundé, Cameroon)
    Abstract: Several previous studies have explored the nexus between trust and socio-economic conditions but do not attempt to examine channels through which the relation operates. In this paper, we examine how political fractionalization mitigates the positive relationship between trust institutions and national economic performance in Africa. Using Round 7 data of Afrobarometer in over 1000 districts in 34 countries, we find that trust institutions positively and significantly affect economic performance. Nevertheless, the positive effect is attenuated in districts with a high level of political diversity. More specifically, a higher level of trust is associated with lower economic performance at a higher level of political fractionalization and vice versa, with a steady linear decrease of the estimated coefficients. Policy implications are discussed.
    Keywords: Trust institutions; economic performance; political diversity
    JEL: K00 O10 P16 P43 P50
    Date: 2022–09
  12. By: KASHIWAGI Yuzuka; TODO Yasuyuki
    Abstract: In the literature, direct physical damage to individuals caused by natural disasters, such as the destruction of houses, is often found to raise their perception of risks of future disasters. This paper examines whether another type of damage caused by disasters, i.e., indirect economic shocks, also affects the risk perception of individuals who are not directly affected by disasters. For this purpose, we focus on cacao farmers in Indonesia who experienced a disruption in trade with their traders after the 2018 Sulawesi earthquake, and use unique, household-level data collected after the earthquake. We find that when farmers were not directly or physically hit by the earthquake, but could not sell their products to their traders for a longer period of time due to the destruction of transport infrastructure and warehouses, they were more likely to perceive a very high risk of future earthquakes in their vicinity. In addition, farmers facing a longer trade disruption tended to believe that the risk of earthquakes is higher than that of other types of natural disasters. These findings imply that the effect of a disaster on individuals’ risk perception propagates geographically through trade networks to regions that are not directly affected by the disaster because of indirect and economic damage.
    Date: 2022–09
  13. By: Esther Laske (UMR ART-Dev - Acteurs, Ressources et Territoires dans le Développement - Cirad - Centre de Coopération Internationale en Recherche Agronomique pour le Développement - UPVM - Université Paul-Valéry - Montpellier 3 - UPVD - Université de Perpignan Via Domitia - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - UM - Université de Montpellier); Sandrine Michel (UMR ART-Dev - Acteurs, Ressources et Territoires dans le Développement - Cirad - Centre de Coopération Internationale en Recherche Agronomique pour le Développement - UPVM - Université Paul-Valéry - Montpellier 3 - UPVD - Université de Perpignan Via Domitia - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - UM - Université de Montpellier)
    Abstract: In the context of Sub-Saharan Africa's demographic boom, the issue of youth employment has become a major concern. Many debates are ongoing regarding agriculture's role in the structural transformation process and providing jobs. In this regard, we explore the opportunity of an agroecological intensification of family farming. We analyze data from agricultural households in the Niayes area of Senegal collected in 2019 and use a clustering method to group farms and rank them according to agroecological practices. Diversity and livestock integration are the most differentiating factors across the identified farming systems. Considering labor allocation complexity within family farms, we compare employment indicators between farming systems to look for agroecology's effect on agricultural work. We observe diversity in the intensity of labor requirements across the different systems but no overall increase for the most agroecological. However, women working hours appear significantly increased for two groups suggesting a substitution with wage workers for the most agroecological systems.
    Keywords: agroecology,employment,sub-Saharan Africa,labor,family farming,farming systems
    Date: 2022

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