IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/eee/ehbiol/v10y2012i2p210-219.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

Height and cognitive achievement among Indian children

Author

Listed:
  • Spears, Dean

Abstract

Taller children perform better on average on tests of cognitive achievement, in part because of differences in early-life health and net nutrition. Recent research documenting this height–achievement slope has primarily focused on rich countries. Using the India Human Development Survey, a representative sample of 40,000 households which matches anthropometric data to learning tests, this paper documents a height–achievement slope among Indian children. The height–achievement slope in India is more than twice as steep as in the U.S. An earlier survey interviewed some IHDS children's households eleven years before. Including matched early-life control variables reduces the apparent effect of height, but does not eliminate it; water, sanitation, and hygiene may be particularly important for children's outcomes. Being one standard deviation taller is associated with being 5 percentage points more likely to be able to write, a slope that falls only to 3.4 percentage points controlling for a long list of contemporary and early-life conditions.

Suggested Citation

  • Spears, Dean, 2012. "Height and cognitive achievement among Indian children," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, vol. 10(2), pages 210-219.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:ehbiol:v:10:y:2012:i:2:p:210-219 DOI: 10.1016/j.ehb.2011.08.005
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1570677X11000888
    Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Abhijit Banerjee & Esther Duflo & Maitreesh Ghatak & Jeanne Lafortune, 2013. "Marry for What? Caste and Mate Selection in Modern India," American Economic Journal: Microeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 5(2), pages 33-72, May.
    2. Anne Case & Christina Paxson, 2008. "Stature and Status: Height, Ability, and Labor Market Outcomes," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 116(3), pages 499-532, June.
    3. Almond, Douglas & Currie, Janet, 2011. "Human Capital Development before Age Five," Handbook of Labor Economics, Elsevier.
    4. Anne Case & Christina Paxson, 2010. "Causes and consequences of early-life health," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 47(1), pages 65-85, March.
    5. Doyle, Orla & Harmon, Colm P. & Heckman, James J. & Tremblay, Richard E., 2009. "Investing in early human development: Timing and economic efficiency," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, vol. 7(1), pages 1-6, March.
    6. Stephan Klasen, 2008. "Poverty, undernutrition, and child mortality: Some inter-regional puzzles and their implicationsfor research and policy," The Journal of Economic Inequality, Springer;Society for the Study of Economic Inequality, pages 89-115.
    7. Janet Currie, 2009. "Healthy, Wealthy, and Wise: Socioeconomic Status, Poor Health in Childhood, and Human Capital Development," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, pages 87-122.
    8. Mahal, Ajay & Karan, Anup K., 2008. "Adequacy of dietary intakes and poverty in India: Trends in the 1990s," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, vol. 6(1), pages 57-74, March.
    9. Geeta Kingdon, 2010. "Health, Nutrition and Academic Achievement: New Evidence from India," CSAE Working Paper Series 2010-14, Centre for the Study of African Economies, University of Oxford.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Hammer, Jeffrey & Spears, Dean, 2013. "Village sanitation and children's human capital : evidence from a randomized experiment by the Maharashtra government," Policy Research Working Paper Series 6580, The World Bank.
    2. Vyas, Sangita & Kov, Phyrum & Smets, Susanna & Spears, Dean, 2016. "Disease externalities and net nutrition: Evidence from changes in sanitation and child height in Cambodia, 2005–2010," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, pages 235-245.
    3. Dean Spears, 2012. "How much international variation in child height can sanitation explain?," Working Papers 1436, Princeton University, Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Research Program in Development Studies..
    4. Guven, Cahit & Lee, Wang-Sheng, 2015. "Height, aging and cognitive abilities across Europe," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, pages 16-29.
    5. Janet Currie & Tom Vogl, 2013. "Early-Life Health and Adult Circumstance in Developing Countries," Annual Review of Economics, Annual Reviews, vol. 5(1), pages 1-36, May.
    6. repec:eee:cysrev:v:79:y:2017:i:c:p:263-273 is not listed on IDEAS
    7. Coffey, Diane, 2015. "Early life mortality and height in Indian states," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, pages 177-189.
    8. Cavatorta, Elisa & Shankar, Bhavani & Flores-Martinez, Artemisa, 2015. "Explaining Cross-State Disparities in Child Nutrition in Rural India," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 76(C), pages 216-237.
    9. Dercon, Stefan & Sánchez, Alan, 2013. "Height in mid childhood and psychosocial competencies in late childhood: Evidence from four developing countries," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, pages 426-432.
    10. repec:pri:rpdevs:currie_vogl_ar is not listed on IDEAS
    11. Lawson, Nicholas & Spears, Dean, 2016. "What doesn't kill you makes you poorer: Adult wages and early-life mortality in India," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, pages 1-16.
    12. Dendir, Seife, 2013. "Children's Endowment, Schooling, and Work in Ethiopia," WIDER Working Paper Series 086, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
    13. Hammer, Jeffrey & Spears, Dean, 2016. "Village sanitation and child health: Effects and external validity in a randomized field experiment in rural India," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 48(C), pages 135-148.
    14. Daniel LaFave & Duncan Thomas, 2016. "Height and Cognition at Work: Labor Market Productivity in a Low Income Setting," Working Papers id:10861, eSocialSciences.
    15. Daniel LaFave & Duncan Thomas, 2016. "Height and Cognition at Work: Labor Market Productivity in a Low Income Setting," Working Papers id:10861, eSocialSciences.
    16. Jeffrey S. Hammer, 2013. "Balancing Market and Government Failure in Service Delivery," Lahore Journal of Economics, Department of Economics, The Lahore School of Economics, vol. 18(Special E), pages 1-19, September.

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:ehbiol:v:10:y:2012:i:2:p:210-219. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Dana Niculescu). General contact details of provider: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/622964 .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.