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Impact of Natural Disasters on Education Outcomes: Evidence from the 1987–89 Locust Plague in Mali

Listed author(s):
  • Philippe De Vreyer
  • Nathalie Guilbert
  • Sandrine Mesple-Somps

This paper estimates the long-run impact of a large income shock based on regional variations in the 1987–89 locust plague in Mali. We take comprehensive population census data to construct birth cohorts of individuals and compare those born and living in the years and villages affected by locust plagues with other cohorts. We find a clear, strong impact on the educational outcomes of children living in rural areas, but no impact at all on children living in urban areas. School enrolment by boys born or less than four at the time of shock is found to be affected. School enrolment by boys born in 1987–88, the main infestation years, is found to be hardest hit by the plagues. However, although the impact on school enrolment figures is greater for boys than girls, the educational attainments of girls attending school and living in rural areas are harder hit than the boys. Our controls for individuals' potentially selective migration behaviour and for differences in school infrastructures do nothing to change our results. Our findings are also robust to controls for age misreporting and variations in the cohort cut-off point.

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File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1093/jae/eju018
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Article provided by Centre for the Study of African Economies (CSAE) in its journal Journal of African Economies.

Volume (Year): 24 (2015)
Issue (Month): 1 ()
Pages: 57-100

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Handle: RePEc:oup:jafrec:v:24:y:2015:i:1:p:57-100.
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