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Saving and Re-building Lives: an Analysis of the Determinants of Disaster Relief

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  • Geethanjali Selvaretnam
  • Kannika Thampanishvong
  • David Ulph

Abstract

We analyse both theoretically and empirically, the factors that influence the amount of humanitarian aid which countries receive when they are struck by natural disasters. Our investigation particularly distinguishes between immediate disaster relief which helps the survival of victims and long term humanitarian aid given towards reconstruction and rehabilitation. The theoretical model is able to make predictions as well as explain some of the peculiarities in the empirical results. The empirical analysis, making use of some useful data sources, show that both short and long term humanitarian aid increase with number of people killed, financial loss and level of corruption, while GDP per capita has no effect. Number of people affected had no effect on short term aid, but significantly increased long term aid. Both types of aid increased if the natural disaster was an earthquake, tsunami or drought. In addition, short term aid increases in response to a flood while long term aid increases in response to storms.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Centre for Research into Industry, Enterprise, Finance and the Firm in its series CRIEFF Discussion Papers with number 1202.

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Handle: RePEc:san:crieff:1202

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Keywords: Humanitarian aid; disaster relief; natural disaster;

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  1. Christian R. Jaramillo H., 2009. "Do Natural Disasters Have Long-term Effects on Growth?," DOCUMENTOS CEDE 006647, UNIVERSIDAD DE LOS ANDES-CEDE.
  2. Raddatz, Claudio, 2007. "Are external shocks responsible for the instability of output in low-income countries?," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 84(1), pages 155-187, September.
  3. Mark Skidmore & Hideki Toya, 2005. "Economic Development and the Impacts of Natural Disasters," Working Papers 05-04, UW-Whitewater, Department of Economics.
  4. Noy, Ilan, 2009. "The macroeconomic consequences of disasters," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 88(2), pages 221-231, March.
  5. Paul A. Raschky & Manijeh Schwindt, 2009. "On the Channel and Type of International Disaster Aid," Working Papers 2009-16, Faculty of Economics and Statistics, University of Innsbruck.
  6. Eduardo Cavallo & Ilan Noy, 2009. "The Economics of Natural Disasters: A Survey," Research Department Publications 4649, Inter-American Development Bank, Research Department.
  7. J. Atsu Amegashie & Bazoumana Ouattara & Eric Strobl, 2007. "Moral Hazard and the Composition of Transfers: Theory with an Application to Foreign Aid," CESifo Working Paper Series 1996, CESifo Group Munich.
  8. Loayza, Norman & Olaberria, Eduardo & Rigolini, Jamele & Christiaensen, Luc, 2009. "Natural disasters and growth - going beyond the averages," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4980, The World Bank.
  9. Carter, Michael R. & Little, Peter D. & Mogues, Tewodaj & Negatu, Workneh, 2007. "Poverty Traps and Natural Disasters in Ethiopia and Honduras," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 35(5), pages 835-856, May.
  10. Fink, Guenther & Redaelli, Silvia, 2009. "Determinants of international emergency aid - humanitarian need only ?," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4839, The World Bank.
  11. Thomas Eisensee & David Strömberg, 2007. "News Droughts, News Floods, and U.S. Disaster Relief," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 122(2), pages 693-728, 05.
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