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Stunting and Selection Effects of Famine: A Case Study of the Great Chinese Famine

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  • G淡rgens, Tue
  • Meng, Xin
  • Vaithianathan, Rhema

Abstract

Many developing countries experience famine. If survival is related to height, the increasingly common practice of using height as a measure of well-being may be misleading. We devise a novel method for disentangling the stunting from the selection effects of famine. Using data from the 1959-1961 Great Chinese Famine, we find that taller children were more likely to survive the famine. Controlling for selection, we estimate that children under the age of five who survived the famine grew up to be 1 to 2 cm shorter. Our results suggest that average height is potentially a biased measure of economic conditions during childhood.

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File URL: http://hermes-ir.lib.hit-u.ac.jp/rs/bitstream/10086/18742/1/wp2010-2.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Center for Economic Institutions, Institute of Economic Research, Hitotsubashi University in its series CEI Working Paper Series with number 2010-2.

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Length: 45 p.
Date of creation: Oct 2010
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:hit:hitcei:2010-2

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Keywords: Famine; height; China; panel data;

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