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Dependency, democracy, and infant mortality: a quantitative, cross-national analysis of less developed countries

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  • Shandra, John M.
  • Nobles, Jenna
  • London, Bruce
  • Williamson, J.B.John B.
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    Abstract

    This study presents quantitative, sociological models designed to account for cross-national variation in infant mortality rates. We consider variables linked to four different theoretical perspectives: the economic modernization, social modernization, political modernization, and dependency perspectives. The study is based on a panel regression analysis of a sample of 59 developing countries. Our preliminary analysis based on additive models replicates prior studies to the extent that we find that indicators linked to economic and social modernization have beneficial effects on infant mortality. We also find support for hypotheses derived from the dependency perspective suggesting that multinational corporate penetration fosters higher levels of infant mortality. Subsequent analysis incorporating interaction effects suggest that the level of political democracy conditions the effects of dependency relationships based upon exports, investments from multinational corporations, and international lending institutions. Transnational economic linkages associated with exports, multinational corporations, and international lending institutions adversely affect infant mortality more strongly at lower levels of democracy than at higher levels of democracy: intranational, political factors interact with the international, economic forces to affect infant mortality. We conclude with some brief policy recommendations and suggestions for the direction of future research.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Social Science & Medicine.

    Volume (Year): 59 (2004)
    Issue (Month): 2 (July)
    Pages: 321-333

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    Handle: RePEc:eee:socmed:v:59:y:2004:i:2:p:321-333

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    Keywords: Infant mortality Less developed countries Dependency Cross-national Democracy;

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    Cited by:
    1. Mackenbach, Johan P. & Hu, Yannan & Looman, Caspar W.N., 2013. "Democratization and life expectancy in Europe, 1960–2008," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 93(C), pages 166-175.
    2. Arno Tausch & Almas Heshmati, 2012. "Migration, Openness and the Global Preconditions of "Smart Development"," Bogazici Journal of Economics and Administrative Sciences, Bogazici University, Department of Economics, vol. 26(2), pages 1-62.
    3. Matthew Sanderson, 2010. "International Migration and Human Development in Destination Countries: A Cross-National Analysis of Less-Developed Countries, 1970–2005," Social Indicators Research, Springer, vol. 96(1), pages 59-83, March.
    4. McGuire, James W., 2006. "Basic health care provision and under-5 mortality: A Cross-National study of developing Countries," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 34(3), pages 405-425, March.
    5. Tausch, Arno, 2011. "Globalization as a driver or bottleneck for sustainable development. General tendencies and European implications," MPRA Paper 33227, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    6. Gerry, Christopher J., 2012. "The journals are full of great studies but can we believe the statistics? Revisiting the Mass Privatisation – Mortality Debate," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 75(1), pages 14-22.
    7. Jorgenson, Andrew K. & Alekseyko, Alina & Giedraitis, Vincentas, 2014. "Energy consumption, human well-being and economic development in central and eastern European nations: A cautionary tale of sustainability," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 66(C), pages 419-427.

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