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Health and the Political Agency of Women

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  • Bhalotra, Sonia R.

    ()
    (University of Essex)

  • Clots-Figueras, Irma

    ()
    (Universidad Carlos III de Madrid)

Abstract

We investigate whether politician gender influences policy outcomes in India. We focus upon antenatal and postnatal public health provision since the costs of poor services in this domain are disproportionately borne by women. Accounting for potential endogeneity of politician gender and the sample composition of births, we find that a one standard deviation increase in women's political representation results in a 1.5 percentage point reduction in neonatal mortality. Women politicians are more likely to build public health facilities and encourage antenatal care, institutional delivery and immunization. The results are topical given that a bill proposing quotas for women in state assemblies is currently pending in the Indian Parliament.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 6216.

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Length: 45 pages
Date of creation: Dec 2011
Date of revision:
Publication status: forthcoming in: American Economic Journal: Economic Policy
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp6216

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Keywords: social preferences; health; mortality; gender; political identity; India;

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References

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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Bhalotra, Sonia R. & Clots-Figueras, Irma & Cassan, Guilhem & Iyer, Lakshmi, 2013. "Religion, Politician Identity and Development Outcomes: Evidence from India," IZA Discussion Papers 7473, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  2. Patricia Justino & Ivan Cardona & Rebecca Mitchell & Catherine Müller, 2012. "Quantifying the Impact of Women’s Participation in Post-Conflict Economic Recovery," HiCN Working Papers 131, Households in Conflict Network.
  3. García-Peñalosa C. & Konte M., 2014. "Why are women less democratic than men? Evidence from Sub-Saharan African countries," MERIT Working Papers 010, United Nations University - Maastricht Economic and Social Research Institute on Innovation and Technology (MERIT).
  4. Santosh Kumar & Nishith Prakash, 2012. "Political Decentralization, Women's Reservation and Child Health Outcomes: A Case Study of Rural Bihar," Working papers 2012-18, University of Connecticut, Department of Economics.
  5. van den Bold, Mara & Quisumbing, Agnes R. & Gillespie, Stuart, 2013. "Women’s empowerment and nutrition: An evidence review:," IFPRI discussion papers 1294, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
  6. Deininger, Klaus & Jin, Songqing & Nagarajan, Hari K. & Fang, Xia, 2011. "Does female reservation affect long-term political outcomes ? Evidence from rural India," Policy Research Working Paper Series 5708, The World Bank.
  7. Ghani, Ejaz & Mani, Anandi & O'Connell, Stephen D., 2013. "Can political empowerment help economic empowerment ? women leaders and female labor force participation in India," Policy Research Working Paper Series 6675, The World Bank.
  8. Bhalotra, Sonia R. & Clots-Figueras, Irma & Iyer, Lakshmi, 2013. "Path-Breakers: How Does Women's Political Participation Respond to Electoral Success?," IZA Discussion Papers 7771, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  9. Brollo, Fernanda & Troiano, Ugo, 2013. "What Happens When a Woman Wins an Election? Evidence from Close Races in Brazil," CAGE Online Working Paper Series 161, Competitive Advantage in the Global Economy (CAGE).
  10. Nagarajan, Hari K. & Deininger, Klaus & Jin, Songqing, 2011. "Can political reservations affect political equilibria in the long-term? Evidence from local elections in rural India," Proceedings of the German Development Economics Conference, Berlin 2011 59, Verein für Socialpolitik, Research Committee Development Economics.
  11. repec:cge:warwcg:160 is not listed on IDEAS

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