nep-lam New Economics Papers
on Central and South America
Issue of 2007‒09‒09
two papers chosen by
Maximo Rossi
University of the Republic

  1. Local Distributional Effects of Government Cash Transfers in Chile By Claudio Agostini; Phillip Brown
  2. Inequality at Low Levels of Aggregation in Chile* By Claudio Agostini; Phillip Brown

  1. By: Claudio Agostini (ILADES-Georgetown University, Universidad Alberto Hurtado); Phillip Brown (Colby College, Waterville, Maine, United States and International Food Policy Research Institute, Washington, D.C., United States.)
    Abstract: Despite rapid economic growth and poverty reduction, inequality in Chile has remained high and remarkably constant over the last 20 years,prompting academic and public interest in the subject. Due to data limitations, however, research on inequality in Chile has concentrated on the national and regional levels. The impact of cash subsidies to poor households on local inequality is thus not well understood. Using povertymapping methods to asses this impact, we find heterogeneity in the effectiveness of regional and municipal governments in reducing inequality via poverty-reduction transfers, suggesting that alternative targeting regimes may complement current practice in aiding the poor.
    Keywords: Inequality, poverty mapping, government cash transfers, Chile
    JEL: H53 I32 O15 D63
    Date: 2007–05
    URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:ila:ilades:inv181&r=lam
  2. By: Claudio Agostini (ILADES-Georgetown University, Universidad Alberto Hurtado); Phillip Brown (Colby College, Waterville, Maine, United States and International Food Policy Research Institute, Washington, D.C., United States.)
    Abstract: Despite success in reducing poverty over the last twenty years, inequality in Chile has remained virtually unchanged, making Chile one of the least equal countries in the world. High levels of inequality have been shown to hamper further reductions in poverty as well as economic growth, and local inequality has been shown to affect such outcomes as violence and health. The study of inequality at the local level is thus crucial for understanding the economic well-being of a country. Local measures of inequality have been difficult to obtain, but recent theoretical advances have enabled the combination of survey and census data to generate estimates of inequality that are robust at disaggregated geographic levels. In this paper, we employ this methodology to produce consistent and precise estimates of inequality for every county in Chile. We find considerable heterogeneity in county-level estimates of inequality, with Gini coefficients ranging from 0.41 to 0.63. An appendix includes estimated inequality for each county so the broader research community may assess the effect of local inequality on a broad range out outcomes, as well as analyze the determinants of inequality itself.
    Keywords: inequality, poverty mapping, government subsidies, cash transfers, Chile
    JEL: O15 D63 O54
    Date: 2007–08
    URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:ila:ilades:inv186&r=lam

This nep-lam issue is ©2007 by Maximo Rossi. It is provided as is without any express or implied warranty. It may be freely redistributed in whole or in part for any purpose. If distributed in part, please include this notice.
General information on the NEP project can be found at http://nep.repec.org. For comments please write to the director of NEP, Marco Novarese at <director@nep.repec.org>. Put “NEP” in the subject, otherwise your mail may be rejected.
NEP’s infrastructure is sponsored by the School of Economics and Finance of Massey University in New Zealand.