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The (hidden) costs of political instability: Evidence from Kenya's 2007 election crisis

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  • Dupas, Pascaline
  • Robinson, Jonathan

Abstract

This paper studies the microeconomic impacts of the political crisis and civil conflict that immediately followed the December 2007 presidential election in Kenya. Income, expenditures, and consumption dramatically declined for a broad segment of the rural population for the duration of the conflict. To make up for the income shortfall, women who supply transactional sex engaged in higher risk sex both during and after the crisis. While this particular crisis was likely too short for these behavioral responses to seriously increase the risk of HIV or other STIs for these women, such responses could have long-term repercussions for health in countries with longer or more frequent crises. Overall, our results suggest that social unrest can be an important channel through which political instability can affect long-term outcomes such as health.

Suggested Citation

  • Dupas, Pascaline & Robinson, Jonathan, 2012. "The (hidden) costs of political instability: Evidence from Kenya's 2007 election crisis," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 99(2), pages 314-329.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:deveco:v:99:y:2012:i:2:p:314-329
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jdeveco.2012.03.003
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Jonathan Robinson & Ethan Yeh, 2012. "Risk-Coping through Sexual Networks: Evidence from Client Transfers in Kenya," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 47(1), pages 107-145.
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    6. Steven Stillman & Duncan Thomas, 2008. "Nutritional Status During an Economic Crisis: Evidence from Russia," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 118(531), pages 1385-1417, August.
    7. Richard Akresh & Damien de Walque, 2008. "Armed Conflict and Schooling: Evidence from the 1994 Rwandan Genocide," HiCN Working Papers 47, Households in Conflict Network.
    8. Luke, Nancy, 2006. "Exchange and Condom Use in Informal Sexual Relationships in Urban Kenya," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 54(2), pages 319-348, January.
    9. Sharon Maccini & Dean Yang, 2009. "Under the Weather: Health, Schooling, and Economic Consequences of Early-Life Rainfall," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 99(3), pages 1006-1026, June.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Eoin McGuirk & Marshall Burke, 2017. "The Economic Origins of Conflict in Africa," NBER Working Papers 23056, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Tobias Lechtenfeld & Asmus Zoch, 2014. "Income Convergence in South Africa: Fact or Measurement Error?," Courant Research Centre: Poverty, Equity and Growth - Discussion Papers 157, Courant Research Centre PEG.
    3. Olivier Sterck, 2015. "Fighting for votes: theory and evidence on the causes of electoral violence," CSAE Working Paper Series 2015-19, Centre for the Study of African Economies, University of Oxford.
    4. Ksoll, Christopher & Macchiavello, Rocco & Morjaria, Ameet, 2010. "The Effect of Ethnic Violence on an Export-Oriented Industry," CEPR Discussion Papers 8074, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    5. Gani Aldashev & Jean-Marie Baland, 2012. "Awareness and AIDS: A Political Economy Perspective," Working Papers 1204, University of Namur, Department of Economics.
    6. Wilson, Nicholas, 2017. "The World’s Oldest Profession? Employment-Age Profiles from the Transactional Sex Market," GLO Discussion Paper Series 77, Global Labor Organization (GLO).
    7. Ngigi, Marther W. & Müller, Ulrike & Birner, Regina, 2015. "The role of livestock portfolios and group-based approaches for building resilience in the face of accelerating climate change: An asset-based panel data analysis from rural Kenya," Discussion Papers 210703, University of Bonn, Center for Development Research (ZEF).
    8. Pascaline Dupas & Jonathan Robinson, 2013. "Daily Needs, Income Targets and Labor Supply: Evidence from Kenya," NBER Working Papers 19264, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    9. Burke, Marshall & Gong, Erick & Jones, Kelly, 2011. "Income shocks and HIV in Sub-Saharan Africa:," IFPRI discussion papers 1146, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
    10. Kountouris, Yiannis & Nakic, Zoran & Sauer, Johannes, 2015. "Political instability and non-market valuation: Evidence from Croatia," Resource and Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 41(C), pages 19-39.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Political instability; Risk-coping; Kenyan post-election crisis;

    JEL classification:

    • O20 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Development Planning and Policy - - - General
    • I10 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - General
    • D74 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Conflict; Conflict Resolution; Alliances; Revolutions

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