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How Much of Cross-Country Income Variation is Explained By Health?

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Listed:
  • Gauri Kartini Shastry

    (Harvard University,)

  • David N. Weil

    (Brown University and NBER,)

Abstract

We use development accounting techniques to assess the contribution of health to differences in income per capita among countries. Rather than rely on regressions in aggregate data, we build up estimates of the effect of health starting from microeconomic data. We examine both a particular condition, anemia, and a proxy for general health, the adult survival rate. We find that differences in anemia explain 1.3 percent of the log variance of income per capita, and that differences in adult survival explain 19 percent of the log variance of income per capita. The latter figure is almost one third of the variation in output that is left unexplained by other measures of factor accumulation. (JEL: O47, I10) Copyright (c) 2003 The European Economic Association.

Suggested Citation

  • Gauri Kartini Shastry & David N. Weil, 2003. "How Much of Cross-Country Income Variation is Explained By Health?," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 1(2-3), pages 387-396, 04/05.
  • Handle: RePEc:tpr:jeurec:v:1:y:2003:i:2-3:p:387-396
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. repec:idb:brikps:42218 is not listed on IDEAS
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • O47 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - Empirical Studies of Economic Growth; Aggregate Productivity; Cross-Country Output Convergence
    • I10 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - General

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