nep-lam New Economics Papers
on Central and South America
Issue of 2022‒09‒05
two papers chosen by
Maximo Rossi
Universidad de la República

  1. Nowcasting the impact of COVID-19 on education, intergenerational mobility and earnings inequality in Sub-Saharan Africa By Neidhöfer, Guido; Lustig, Nora; Larroulet, Patricio
  2. Social Media and the Behavior of Politicians: Evidence from Facebook in Brazil By Pedro Bessone; Filipe R. Campante; Claudio Ferraz; Pedro Souza

  1. By: Neidhöfer, Guido; Lustig, Nora; Larroulet, Patricio
    Abstract: Using microsimulations, we nowcast the impact of learning losses caused by COVID-19 on secondary school completion rates, intergenerational mobility of education, and long-run earnings inequality in eight countries Sub-Saharan Africa. On average, secondary school completion rates decrease by 12 percentage points overall and by 16 points for children with low-educated parents. Interestingly, in most countries the gender gap diminishes because for men the projected decrease in secondary school completion is higher. However, a small additional impact on girls' education due to the Covid-19 induced rise in teenage pregnancy is observed in some countries. Intergenerational mobility of education decreases from 1 to close to 50 percent, depending on the country. As a result of the heterogeneous reduction in average years of schooling for advantaged vs. disadvantaged children, earnings inequality could increase between one and four Gini points, depending on the assumptions.
    Keywords: COVID-19,lockdowns,human capital,school closures,intergenerational persistence,education,inequality,Africa
    JEL: I24 I38 J62
    Date: 2022
  2. By: Pedro Bessone; Filipe R. Campante; Claudio Ferraz; Pedro Souza
    Abstract: We study the relationship between the spread of social media platforms and the communication and responsiveness of politicians towards voters, in the context of the expansion of Facebook in Brazil. We use self-collected data on the universe of Facebook activities by federal legislators and the variation in access induced by the spread of the 3G mobile phone network to establish three sets of findings: (i) Politicians use social media extensively to communicate with constituents, finely targeting localities while addressing policy-relevant topics; (ii) They increase their online engagement, especially with places where they have a large pre-existing vote share; but (iii) They shift their offline engagement (measured by speeches and earmarked transfers) away from connected municipalities within their base of support. Our results suggest that, rather than increasing responsiveness, social media may enable politicians to solidify their position with core supporters using communication strategies, while shifting resources away towards localities that lag in social media presence.
    JEL: D72 H72 L86 L96
    Date: 2022–07

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