Social Preferences and Environmental quality: Evidence from School Children in Sierra Leone
AbstractIn this paper we examine the effects that variations in the quality of the environment at birth have on children’s other-regarding preferences, as measured through four binary-choice dictator games run with school-age children in rural Sierra Leone. We examine the effect of exogenous variations in rainfall level by location and year on children’s social preferences. We also study how age at which children had access to improved water sources, such as protected wells, correlates with preferences. Children born within a healthier environment are more generous, when generosity comes at no personal cost, more likely to choose socially efficient allocations and less averse to advantageous inequality. The correlation between rainfall shocks at birth and children’s height-for-age suggest that environmental quality affects preferences through its impact on health. We find that proxies for early childhood health affect experimental outcomes in a similar way as age, which helps to explain the process by which individuals develop social preferences. No significant relationship is found in our data between environmental quality and educational outcomes, such as school attendance and grades.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Charles University Prague, Faculty of Social Sciences, Institute of Economic Studies in its series Working Papers IES with number 2012/26.
Date of creation: Sep 2012
Date of revision: Sep 2012
Field experiments; Health and Economic Development; Altruism; Inequality Aversion;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- C93 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Field Experiments
- I15 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Health and Economic Development
- D64 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Altruism; Philanthropy
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2012-12-06 (All new papers)
- NEP-DEM-2012-12-06 (Demographic Economics)
- NEP-DEV-2012-12-06 (Development)
- NEP-ENV-2012-12-06 (Environmental Economics)
- NEP-SOC-2012-12-06 (Social Norms & Social Capital)
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