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Risk-sharing networks and insurance against illness

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  • De Weerdt, Joachim
  • Dercon, Stefan

Abstract

Most risk-sharing tests on developing country data are conducted at the level of the village; generally, the full risk-sharing hypothesis is rejected. This paper uses detailed data on all insurance networks within a village in Tanzania; networks are not clustered but largely overlapping. We test whether full risk-sharing occurs within these networks. We find that even within these smaller networks risk is not fully shared. In the event of a health shock, households reduce overall consumption: they cut back non-food consumption by roughly 30%, while protecting their food consumption.
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Suggested Citation

  • De Weerdt, Joachim & Dercon, Stefan, 2006. "Risk-sharing networks and insurance against illness," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 81(2), pages 337-356, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:deveco:v:81:y:2006:i:2:p:337-356
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • D12 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Consumer Economics: Empirical Analysis
    • O12 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Microeconomic Analyses of Economic Development
    • O15 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Economic Development: Human Resources; Human Development; Income Distribution; Migration

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