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How Resilient are Labour Markets to Natural Disasters? The Case of the 1998 Bangladesh Flood

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  • Valerie Mueller
  • Agnes Quisumbing

Abstract

Natural disasters devastate economies as they impede capital accumulation. The resilience of labour markets is crucial for the poor who rely on labour to reduce risk. We evaluate how the 1998 ‘flood of the century’ affected wages in Bangladesh. We find short-term declines in agricultural and non-agricultural wages. Agricultural workers who moved towards non-agricultural employment to cope benefitted through a lower percentage reduction in short-term wages. Endowed with human capital, salaried workers were unable to mitigate income risk. Extending the eligibility of credit access or relief programmes may preserve local businesses and their employees in the years following a flood.

Suggested Citation

  • Valerie Mueller & Agnes Quisumbing, 2011. "How Resilient are Labour Markets to Natural Disasters? The Case of the 1998 Bangladesh Flood," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 47(12), pages 1954-1971.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:jdevst:v:47:y:2011:i:12:p:1954-1971
    DOI: 10.1080/00220388.2011.579113
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    Cited by:

    1. Tillmann Heidelk, 2019. "The Returns to Education in the Context of a Natural Disaster: Evidence from the 2010 Earthquake in Haiti," Working Papers ECARES 2019-17, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
    2. Michel Beine & Christopher R Parsons, 2017. "Climatic Factors as Determinants of International Migration: Redux," CESifo Economic Studies, CESifo, vol. 63(4), pages 386-402.
    3. Giorgio Di Pietro & Toni Mora, 2015. "The Effect of the L'Aquila Earthquake on Labour Market Outcomes," Environment and Planning C, , vol. 33(2), pages 239-255, April.
    4. Shaikh M. S. U. Eskander & Sam Fankhauser, 2022. "Income Diversification and Income Inequality: Household Responses to the 2013 Floods in Pakistan," Sustainability, MDPI, vol. 14(1), pages 1-12, January.
    5. Maribel Jiménez Martínez & Mónica Jiménez Martínez & Rocío Romero-Jarén, 2020. "How resilient is the labour market against natural disaster? Evaluating the effects from the 2010 earthquake in Chile," Natural Hazards: Journal of the International Society for the Prevention and Mitigation of Natural Hazards, Springer;International Society for the Prevention and Mitigation of Natural Hazards, vol. 104(2), pages 1481-1533, November.
    6. Azreen Karim & Ilan Noy, 2016. "Poverty and Natural Disasters: A Meta-Regression Analysis," Review of Economics and Institutions, Università di Perugia, vol. 7(2).
    7. Michał Burzyński & Christoph Deuster & Frédéric Docquier & Jaime de Melo, 2022. "Climate Change, Inequality, and Human Migration [“The Economic Costs of Conflict: A Case Study of the Basque Country.”]," Journal of the European Economic Association, European Economic Association, vol. 20(3), pages 1145-1197.
    8. Desbureaux, Sébastien & Rodella, Aude-Sophie, 2019. "Drought in the city: The economic impact of water scarcity in Latin American metropolitan areas," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 114(C), pages 13-27.
    9. Azreen Karim & Ilan Noy, 2016. "Poverty And Natural Disasters — A Qualitative Survey Of The Empirical Literature," The Singapore Economic Review (SER), World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd., vol. 61(01), pages 1-36, March.
    10. Eskander, Shaikh & Barbier, Edward, 2016. "Adaptation to Natural Disasters Through the Agricultural Land Rental Market: Evidence from Bangladesh," 2016 Annual Meeting, July 31-August 2, Boston, Massachusetts 235648, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
    11. Eskander, Shaikh M.S.U. & Fankhauser, Samuel & Jha, Shikha, 2016. "Do Natural Disasters Change Savings and Employment Choices? Evidence from Bangladesh and Pakistan," ADB Economics Working Paper Series 505, Asian Development Bank.
    12. Quang Nguyen, 2017. "Do Natural Disasters Open a Window of Opportunity for Corruption?," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 53(1), pages 156-172, January.
    13. Sin Meun How & Geoffrey N. Kerr, 2019. "Earthquake Impacts on Immigrant Participation in the Greater Christchurch Construction Labor Market," Population Research and Policy Review, Springer;Southern Demographic Association (SDA), vol. 38(2), pages 241-269, April.
    14. Hamid R. Oskorouchi & Alfonso Sousa‐Poza, 2021. "Floods, food security, and coping strategies: Evidence from Afghanistan," Agricultural Economics, International Association of Agricultural Economists, vol. 52(1), pages 123-140, January.
    15. Xiaodong Zhu & Zijing Jin & Shunsuke Managi & XiRong Xun, 2021. "How meteorological disasters affect the labor market? The moderating effect of government emergency response policy," Natural Hazards: Journal of the International Society for the Prevention and Mitigation of Natural Hazards, Springer;International Society for the Prevention and Mitigation of Natural Hazards, vol. 107(3), pages 2625-2640, July.
    16. Parida, Yashobanta & Roy Chowdhury, Joyita, 2021. "An empirical analysis of the effect of floods on rural agricultural wages across Indian states," World Development Perspectives, Elsevier, vol. 23(C).
    17. Aparajita Dasgupta & Anahita Karandikar, 2021. "Gender-Gap in Learning Outcomes under Rainfall Shocks: The Role of Gender Norms," Working Papers 70, Ashoka University, Department of Economics.
    18. Sam Fankhauser, 2016. "Adaptation to climate change," GRI Working Papers 255, Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment.
    19. Karim, Azreen, 2018. "The Household Response to Persistent Natural Disasters: Evidence from Bangladesh," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 103(C), pages 40-59.
    20. Canessa, Eugenia & Giannelli, Gianna Claudia, 2021. "Women's Employment and Natural Shocks," IZA Discussion Papers 14055, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    21. Mahajan, Kanika, 2017. "Rainfall Shocks and the Gender Wage Gap: Evidence from Indian Agriculture," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 91(C), pages 156-172.

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