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Father’s employment and sons’ stature: the long run effects of a positive regional employment shock in South Africa’s mining industry

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  • Martine Mariotti

    ()
    (Research School of Economics, Australian National University and University of Stellenbosch)

Abstract

I exploit the sudden increase in employment in 1975, 1976 and 1977 in four former South African homelands to compare the long term adult outcomes of children benefitting from the employment increase to those not subject to it. Using a standard difference in difference approach I find that there was severe malnutrition in the homelands resulting in stunting in African men born during the shock providing support to the foetal origins hypothesis. The employment shock did not affect other long term outcomes such as education and general health, although there is some evidence of an improvement in long term health. This study provides previously unmeasured individual level information on the quality of life in the homelands during apartheid, an era when African living standards were neglected but unmeasured because of a lack of data collection.

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File URL: http://www.ekon.sun.ac.za/wpapers/2012/wp022012/wp-02-2012.pdf
File Function: First version, 2012
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Stellenbosch University, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 02/2012.

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Date of creation: 2012
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Handle: RePEc:sza:wpaper:wpapers154

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Keywords: apartheid; living standards; stunting; difference-in-difference; foetal origins hypothesis;

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  1. Gテクrgens, Tue & Meng, Xin & Vaithianathan, Rhema, 2010. "Stunting and Selection Effects of Famine: A Case Study of the Great Chinese Famine," PRIMCED Discussion Paper Series, Institute of Economic Research, Hitotsubashi University 2, Institute of Economic Research, Hitotsubashi University.
  2. Nicholas, Stephen & Steckel, Richard H., 1991. "Heights and Living Standards of English Workers During the Early Years of Industrializations, 1770–1815," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge University Press, vol. 51(04), pages 937-957, December.
  3. Timothy J. Hatton & Richard M. Martin, 2008. "The Effects on Stature of Poverty, Family Size and Birth Order: British Children in the 1930s," CEPR Discussion Papers, Centre for Economic Policy Research, Research School of Economics, Australian National University 572, Centre for Economic Policy Research, Research School of Economics, Australian National University.
  4. John Komlos, . "The Height and Weight of West Point Cadets: Dietary Change in Antebellum America," Articles by John Komlos, Department of Economics, University of Munich 32, Department of Economics, University of Munich.
  5. Douglas Almond & Lena Edlund & Hongbin Li & Junsen Zhang, 2007. "Long-Term Effects Of The 1959-1961 China Famine: Mainland China and Hong Kong," NBER Working Papers 13384, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Douglas Almond & Janet Currie, 2011. "Killing Me Softly: The Fetal Origins Hypothesis," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, American Economic Association, vol. 25(3), pages 153-72, Summer.
  7. Abhijit Banerjee & Esther Duflo & Gilles Postel-Vinay & Tim Watts, 2010. "Long-Run Health Impacts of Income Shocks: Wine and Phylloxera in Nineteenth-Century France," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 92(4), pages 714-728, November.
  8. Frijters, Paul & Hatton, Timothy J. & Martin, Richard M. & Shields, Michael A., 2010. "Childhood economic conditions and length of life: Evidence from the UK Boyd Orr cohort, 1937-2005," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 29(1), pages 39-47, January.
  9. Richard H. Steckel, 1995. "Stature and the Standard of Living," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, American Economic Association, vol. 33(4), pages 1903-1940, December.
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