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The macroeconomics of targeting: the case of an enduring epidemic

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  • Bell, Clive
  • Gersbach, Hans

Abstract

What is the right balance among policy interventions in order to ensure economic growth over the long run when an epidemic causes heavy mortality among young adults? We argue that, in general, policies to combat the disease and promote education must be concentrated, in certain ways, at first on some subgroups of society. This concentration involves what we term the macroeconomics of targeting. The central comparison is then between programs under which supported families enjoy the benefits of spending on health and education simultaneously (DT), and those under which the benefits in these two domains are sequenced (ST). When levels of human capital are uniformly low at the outbreak, DT is superior to ST if the mortality rate exceeds some threshold value. Outside aid makes DT more attractive; but DT restricts support to fewer families initially and so increases inequality. A summary account of the empirical evidence is followed by an application of the framework to South Africa.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Health Economics.

Volume (Year): 28 (2009)
Issue (Month): 1 (January)
Pages: 54-72

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Handle: RePEc:eee:jhecon:v:28:y:2009:i:1:p:54-72

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Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/505560

Related research

Keywords: Epidemic diseases; HIV/AIDS; Macroeconomics of targeting; Education support; Health policies;

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References

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  1. Clive Bell & Shantayanan Devarajan & Hans Gersbach, 2003. "The long-run economic costs of AIDS : theory and an application to South Africa," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3152, The World Bank.
  2. Corrigan, Paul & Glomm, Gerhard & Mendez, Fabio, 2005. "AIDS crisis and growth," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 77(1), pages 107-124, June.
  3. Sebnem Kalemli-Ozcan, 2006. "AIDS, "Reversal" of the Demographic Transition and Economic Development: Evidence from Africa," NBER Working Papers 12181, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Evans, David & Miguel, Edward A., 2005. "Orphans and Schooling in Africa: A Longitudinal Analysis," Center for International and Development Economics Research, Working Paper Series qt14w3s2fh, Center for International and Development Economics Research, Institute for Business and Economic Research, UC Berkeley.
  5. Alwyn Young, 2005. "The Gift of the Dying: The Tragedy of Aids and the Welfare of Future African Generations," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 120(2), pages 423-466, May.
  6. McDonald, Scott & Roberts, Jennifer, 2006. "AIDS and economic growth: A human capital approach," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 80(1), pages 228-250, June.
  7. Beegle, Kathleen & De Weerdt, Joachim & Dercon, Stefan, 2007. "The long-run impact of orphanhood," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4353, The World Bank.
  8. Ana Revenga & Mead Over & Emiko Masaki & Wiwat Peerapatanapokin & Julian Gold & Viroj Tangcharoensathien & Sombat Thanprasertsuk, 2006. "The Economics of Effective AIDS Treatment : Evaluating Policy Options for Thailand," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 7196, October.
  9. Takashi Yamano & Thomas S. Jayne, 2005. "Working-age Adult Mortality and Primary Sschool Attendance in Rural Kenya," Development and Comp Systems 0502017, EconWPA.
  10. Gary S. Becker & Kevin M. Murphy & Robert Tamura, . "Human Capital, Fertility, and Economic Growth," University of Chicago - Population Research Center 90-5a, Chicago - Population Research Center.
  11. Bell, Clive & Gersbach, Hans, 2001. "Child Labor and the Education of a Society," IZA Discussion Papers 338, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  12. Clive Bell & Shantayanan Devarajan & Hans Gersbach, 2006. "The Long-Run Economic Costs of aids: A Model with an Application to South Africa," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 20(1), pages 55-89.
  13. Galasso, Emanuela & Ravallion, Martin, 2005. "Decentralized targeting of an antipoverty program," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 89(4), pages 705-727, April.
  14. Ramona Schrepler, 2003. "Child Labor and Fertility," HEW 0310001, EconWPA, revised 26 Feb 2004.
  15. Leigh F. Johnson & Rob Dorrington, 2006. "Modelling the demographic impact of HIV/AIDS in South Africa and the likely impact of interventions," Demographic Research, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany, vol. 14(22), pages 541-574, June.
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Cited by:
  1. Fenichel, Eli P., 2013. "Economic considerations for social distancing and behavioral based policies during an epidemic," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(2), pages 440-451.

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