nep-dev New Economics Papers
on Development
Issue of 2023‒02‒20
eleven papers chosen by
Jacob A. Jordaan
Universiteit Utrecht

  1. Ethnic Remoteness Reduces the Peace Dividend from Trade Access By Klaus Desmet; Joseph F. Gomes
  2. Does Less Education Harm Health? Evidence from a Natural Experiment in a Developing Country By Mallick, Debdulal; Khalil, Islam; Nicholas, Aaron
  3. Micro insights on the pathways to agricultural transformation: Comparative evidence from Southeast Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa By Amare, Mulubrhan; Parvathi, Priyanka; Nguyen, Trung Thanh
  4. Health Effects of Fuel Transitions in India: Evidence from Panel Data By Azam, Mehtabul
  5. A Geometric Analysis of Technological Heterogeneity in the Agricultural Sector: Evidence from Maize in Tanzania. By Nchare, Karim; Vitouley, Marcel; Kaila, Heidi; Liu, Yanyan
  6. Smallholder farmers’ participation in profitable value chains and contract farming: Evidence from irrigated agriculture in Egypt By Tabe-Ojong, Martin Paul Jr.; Abay, Kibrom A.
  7. Impact of Forced Sterilization on Female Labor Market Outcomes: Evidence from India By Prasad, Niranjana
  8. Green Energy Finance and Gender Disparity: The Case of Mountain Areas in Bangladesh By Amin, Sakib Bin; Chowdhury, Mainul Islam; Jamasb, Tooraj; Khan, Farhan; Nepal, Rabindra
  9. How High Can You Climb? Earnings Inequality and Intragenerational Earnings Mobility in a Developing Country: Evidence from Thai Tax Returns By Athiphat Muthitacharoen; Trongwut Burong; Athiphat Muthitacharoen
  10. Child fostering and health nutritional outcomes of under-five: Evidence from Cameroon By Armand Mboutchouang K.; Cédric Foyet K.; Cédrick Kalemasi M.
  11. The Propensity to Remit: Macro and Micro Factors Driving Remittances to Central America and the Caribbean By Chiara Fratto; Hussein Bidawi; Paola Aliperti F. Domingues; Ms. Nicole Laframboise

  1. By: Klaus Desmet; Joseph F. Gomes
    Abstract: This paper shows that ethnically remote locations do not reap the full peace dividend from increased market access. Exploiting the staggered implementation of the US-initiated Africa Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) and using high-resolution data on ethnic composition and violent conflict for sub-Saharan Africa, our analysis finds that in the wake of improved trade access conflict declines less in locations that are ethnically remote from the rest of the country. We hypothesize that ethnic remoteness acts as a barrier that hampers participation in the global economy. Consistent with this hypothesis, satellite-based luminosity data show that the income gains from improved trade access are smaller in ethnically remote locations, and survey data indicate that ethnically more distant individuals do not benefit from the same positive income shocks when exposed to increased market access. These results underscore the importance of ethnic barriers when analyzing which locations and groups might be left behind by globalization.
    JEL: D74 F13 F6 O12 O55 R11 Z1
    Date: 2023–01
  2. By: Mallick, Debdulal; Khalil, Islam; Nicholas, Aaron
    Abstract: We investigate the effects on health outcomes resulting from a reduction in years of schooling in Egypt in 1988, a policy change that moves in the opposite direction in relation to the extant literature. We exploit this policy change as a natural experiment and employ a fuzzy regression discontinuity design to investigate a wide range of objectively measured health outcomes and behaviors. Despite the policy’s adverse effect on years of schooling and students’ ability to complete educational milestones, there is no effect on any of the health outcomes. Our results (or lack thereof) add to the complexity and nuance of the findings in the literature that is focused on the effect of increasing compulsory schooling (or school leaving age), particularly in developing countries.
    Keywords: Education; Health; Natural experiment; Fuzzy regression discontinuity
    JEL: C99 I12 I20
    Date: 2023–01
  3. By: Amare, Mulubrhan; Parvathi, Priyanka; Nguyen, Trung Thanh
    Abstract: Most studies of agricultural transformation document the impact of agricultural income growth on macroeconomic indicators of development. Much less is known about the micro-scale changes within the farming sector that signal a transformation precipitated by agricultural income growth. This study provides a comparative analysis of the patterns of micro-level changes that occur among small-holder farmers in Uganda and Malawi in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA), and Thailand and Vietnam in Southeast Asia (SEA). Our analysis provides several important insights on agricultural transformation in these two regions. First, agricultural income in all examined countries is vulnerable to changes in precipitation and temperature, an effect that is nonlinear and asymmetric. SSA countries are more vulnerable to these weather changes. Second, exogenous increases in agricultural income in previous years improve non-farm income and trigger a change in labor allocation within the rural sector in SEA. However, this is opposite in SSA where the increase in agricultural income reduces non-farm income, indicating a substitution effect between farm and non-farm sectors. These findings reveal clear agricultural transformation driven by agricultural income in SEA, but no similar evidence in SSA.
    Keywords: UGANDA; EAST AFRICA; AFRICA SOUTH OF SAHARA; AFRICA; MALAWI; SOUTHERN AFRICA; AFRICA SOUTH OF SAHARA; AFRICA; THAILAND; VIET NAM; VIETNAM; SOUTH EAST ASIA; ASIA; agricultural transformation; comparative analysis; data; data analysis; development; farm income; farmers; income; macroeconomics; patterns; precipitation; smallholders; temperature; vulnerability; micro-level changes
    Date: 2022
  4. By: Azam, Mehtabul (Oklahoma State University)
    Abstract: We use a nationally representative panel data and combine difference-in-differences methodology with multivalued treatments to look at the impact of cooking fuel switch towards LPG on the probability of short-term adverse respiratory health outcomes such as cough and cough with breathing issues. We find that a switch by households from polluting fuels to LPG reduces the probability of any household member reporting adverse short-term respiratory issues. However, a switch from polluting fuels to a fuel stacking strategy has no impact on the adverse respiratory health issues. A reverse switch by households from LPG to polluting fuels increases the probability of household members reporting adverse health outcomes. Importantly, the clean switch to LPG has a much larger impact for women in reducing the incidence of short-term adverse respiratory outcomes.
    Keywords: fuel switching, difference-in-differences, multivalued treatments
    JEL: I1 O12
    Date: 2023–01
  5. By: Nchare, Karim; Vitouley, Marcel; Kaila, Heidi; Liu, Yanyan
    Abstract: This paper presents a new framework to measure farm-level heterogeneity, and productivity change, and to study the rate and direction of technical change within an agricultural sector. Building on the seminal works of Hildenbrand (1981) and Dosi et al. (2016), we show how, while relaxing most of the standard assumptions from production theory, discrete geometry is an effective tool for productivity analysis and technical change in agricultural economics. We apply the framework to a rich panel data from maize farmers in Tanzania to investigate the dynamics of technical heterogeneity and agricultural productivity growth.
    Keywords: Agricultural and Food Policy
    Date: 2022–01–01
  6. By: Tabe-Ojong, Martin Paul Jr.; Abay, Kibrom A.
    Abstract: The participation of smallholder farmers in high-value and profitable value chains as well as contract farming remains low in Africa. This paper aims to identify observable and unobservable constraints that explain joint participation in profitable value chains and contract farming. We use a multivariate probit model to estimate potential complementarities between the cultivation of these various value chains (vegetables, fruits, spices, herbs, and cereals), and participation in contract farming. We identify several important observable factors that reinforce and hence limit smallholders’ participation in both low and highvalue chains as well as contract farming. For example, we find suggestive evidence that mallholders in Egypt face a trade-off between ensuring food security to their households and maximizing profit, and land plays a major factor in moderating this trade-off. We find that farmers with limited land resources are more likely to devote a larger share of their land to low-value crops such as cereals while this pattern weakens with increasing land size and slightly reverses for high-value crops such as spices and herbs. This suggests until some level of land resources, food security goals may dominate profit motives while this reverses after ensuring that food security goals are achieved. Younger and wealthier farmers are more likely to participate in the cultivation of high-value crops such as spices and herbs as well as contract farming. We also document strong complementarities between participation in high-value value chains and contract farming. Particularly, farmers who cultivate high-value crops are more likely to be engaged in contract farming. Intuitively, this implies that addressing smallholders’ binding constraints, including risk and access to land, can encourage participation in profitable value chains and contract farming. Our findings offer suggestive evidence that may serve in targeting smallholders to join profitable value chains in Egypt and other comparable contexts.
    Keywords: EGYPT; ARAB COUNTRIES; MIDDLE EAST; NORTH AFRICA; AFRICA; agricultural value chains; cereals; contract farming; farmers; food security; fruits; herbaceous plants; land access; probit analysis; smallholders; spices; vegetables high-value value chains; low-value crops
    Date: 2023
  7. By: Prasad, Niranjana (Université catholique de Louvain, LIDAM/CORE, Belgium)
    Abstract: I investigate the impact of the 1975-76 forced sterilization campaign carried out by the Indira Gandhi government in India on women’s long run labor market outcomes. Using large data samples from India and accounting for endogeneity concerns, I find that exposure to the forced sterilization campaign at the district-level reduces long-term labor market participation by 4.5% and 1.5% in agricultural and sales occupations and increases unemployment by 4.7% and I elucidate mechanisms. The proposed mechanism of this is the disutility derived from having a working wife. This result is contrary to existing literature that indicates that women’s access to contraception increases their labor market participation, in the context of coercive sterilization campaigns.
    Keywords: India ; Emergency ; family planning ; sterilization ; labor market outcomes
    JEL: J13 J21
    Date: 2022–10–18
  8. By: Amin, Sakib Bin (North South University); Chowdhury, Mainul Islam (North South University); Jamasb, Tooraj (Department of Economics, Copenhagen Business School); Khan, Farhan (North South University); Nepal, Rabindra (University of Wollongong)
    Abstract: This paper examines the relationship between electricity access, gender disparity, and green finance in the mountain areas of Bangladesh. We use a novel new micro-level survey data collected for the purpose of this study. We develop unique weighted indices and applying robust instrumental generalised method of moment estimation. The findings indicate that increase in electricity access (hours) is beneficial to empowerment of women in the Chittagong Hill Tracts (CHT) districts in grid-connected and off-grid areas. Using a quasi-experimental framework, we find no significant evidence suggesting that women from grid-connected households tend to enjoy greater gender parity than women from off-grid areas. This is likely due to increase in adoption of renewable energy devices such as Solar Home System (SHS). Using a probabilistic random utility model, we show that a surge in different expenditures tends to supress adoption of renewable energy in poor households more than in non-poor households, given the high prices and lack of financial schemes to support the purchase of renewable device. The expansion of green financial tools and strategies at the household and macro level is necessary to advance the outreach of renewable energy in the CHT districts to continue achieving gender parity.
    Keywords: Women Empowerment; Gender Disparity; Green Energy; Electricity; Green Finance; Mountain; CHT; Bangladesh.
    JEL: D10 D13 D14 D40 D63 H42 Q41 Q43
    Date: 2023–01–11
  9. By: Athiphat Muthitacharoen; Trongwut Burong; Athiphat Muthitacharoen
    Abstract: This paper investigates inequality and intragenerational economic mobility in a developing country with large inequality. Understanding economic mobility is important because it shapes our perception of inequality. Despite its significance, evidence on intragenerational mobility, especially that based on administrative data, is relatively limited in developing countries. Using Thailand’s tax return data, we study the evolution of earnings inequality, estimate medium-term earnings mobility, and examine the heterogeneity of mobility across age, gender and employment arrangement. Our analysis yields three main findings. First, annual earnings inequality rises during the 2009-2018 period. We find that the inequality is largely permanent, and its increase is primarily driven by top-earnings workers. Second, we find that medium-term mobility follows a U-shaped pattern across the earnings distribution, with extremely high persistence at the top. Our suggestive comparison indicates that Thailand’s earnings mobility is among the lowest in the pool of evidence from both developed and developing countries. Third, there is a considerable heterogeneity in mobility regarding employment arrangement. Workers in less-formal jobs have much lower upward mobility than those in more-formal employment. Our findings also indicate significant heterogeneity in mobility with respect to gender and age. These findings highlight the importance of ensuring that any increase in inequality caused by the Covid-19 crisis does not become permanent, as well as improving access to opportunities for vulnerable workers.
    Keywords: intragenerational earnings mobility, inequality
    JEL: D31 D63 H20 J31 J60
    Date: 2023
  10. By: Armand Mboutchouang K. (University of Dschang, Cameroon); Cédric Foyet K. (University of Maroua, Cameroon); Cédrick Kalemasi M. (University of Kinshasa, DR Congo)
    Abstract: The objective of this article is to analyze the effect of child fostering on health nutritional outcomes of under-five children in host households in Cameroon. The data used comes from the recent Cameroon Demographic and Health Survey (DHS-V, 2018). Three anthropometric measures of health and nutritional status are retained: stunting, underweight and wasting. The estimation of a recursive bivariate probit model correcting the endogeneity bias of child fostering shows that fostering improves the health nutritional outcomes of children respectively by 1.14% for the risk of stunting, by 1.97 % for the risk of underweight and 1.28% for the risk of wasting. These results are mainly explained by a better investment in human capital by the parents of the host families. Moreover, robustness analyses show that the participation of women in the labor market in host households is an important transmission channel through which child fostering improves the nutritional health of children. This evidence reinforces the interest of women's empowerment policies to guarantee the improvement of the nutritional health of children, since these are two related sustainable development goals.
    Keywords: Child fostering, nutritional health, under-five children, recursive bivariate probit, Cameroon.
    Date: 2023–01
  11. By: Chiara Fratto; Hussein Bidawi; Paola Aliperti F. Domingues; Ms. Nicole Laframboise
    Abstract: In contrast to expectations, remittances to Central America and the Caribbean (CAC) surprised positively during 2020 and 2021. This study revisits the key macro indicators driving remittances, looks at the heterogeneous impacts of the global financial crisis (GFC) and COVID shocks, then uses micro data from the U.S. Current Population Census to examine individual features of immigrant households and how this might affect the “propensity to remit”. The paper finds that remittance flows are responsive to both sending and receiving country economic conditions and that labor market conditions are particularly important determinants of remittance flows, explaining the unexpected jump in remittance flows in 2020-2021 and providing stronger predictive power when combined with income variables. Analysis of the micro data reinforces these findings, reflecting the existence of a family resource sharing model at play.
    Keywords: Migrant remittances; covid-19 pandemic; global financial crisis; elasticities.; remittance flow; micro data; labor market condition; IMF working papers; remittances to Central America and the Caribbean; migrant remittance; Remittances; Migration; Income; Labor markets; Central America; Caribbean; Global
    Date: 2022–09–30

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