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The long-term effects of civil conflicts on education, earnings, and fertility: Evidence from Cambodia

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  • Islam, Asadul
  • Ouch, Chandarany
  • Smyth, Russell
  • Wang, Liang Choon

Abstract

This paper examines the long-term effects of exposure to civil war and genocide on the educational attainment, earnings, and fertility of individuals in Cambodia. Given the well-documented causal links between schooling and labor productivity, it is surprising that past studies show that civil conflicts reduce educational attainment, but generally not earnings of individuals. Using variation in the degree of Cambodians’ exposure to civil conflicts during primary school age, we find that disruption to primary education during civil conflicts decreases educational attainment and earnings, increases fertility, and has negligible effects on health of individuals several decades later. Our findings suggest that the effect of conflict on schooling disruption has adverse consequences on long-term labor productivity and economic development.

Suggested Citation

  • Islam, Asadul & Ouch, Chandarany & Smyth, Russell & Wang, Liang Choon, 2016. "The long-term effects of civil conflicts on education, earnings, and fertility: Evidence from Cambodia," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 44(3), pages 800-820.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jcecon:v:44:y:2016:i:3:p:800-820
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jce.2015.05.001
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Hönig, Tillman, 2017. "The Impact of Peace: Evidence from Nigeria," MPRA Paper 83302, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    2. Michael Palmer & Cuong Nguyen & Sophie Mitra & Daniel Mont & Nora Groce, 2016. "The long-term impact of war on health," HiCN Working Papers 216, Households in Conflict Network.
    3. Paul Frijters, 2001. "Unemployment benefits and educational choices," School of Economics and Finance Discussion Papers and Working Papers Series 099a, School of Economics and Finance, Queensland University of Technology.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Civil conflict; Earnings; Fertility; Genocide; Returns to schooling;

    JEL classification:

    • I12 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Health Behavior
    • I21 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Analysis of Education
    • J13 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Fertility; Family Planning; Child Care; Children; Youth
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
    • O12 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Microeconomic Analyses of Economic Development

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