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Coping with shocks: the impact of Self-Help Groups on migration and food security

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Abstract

This paper asks whether local savings and credit associations help poor rural households hit by climatic shocks. Combining data from an original field experiment with meteorological data, I investigate how Self-Help Groups (SHGs) allow households to cope with rainfall shocks in villages of East India over a sevenyear period. I show that SHGs withstand large rainfall shocks remarkably, and that credit flows are very stable in treated villages. As a result, treated households experience a higher food security during the lean season following a drought and increase seasonal migration to mitigate future income shocks. These results imply that small-scale financial institutions like SHGs help to finance temporary risk management strategies and to cope with important covariate income shocks such as droughts.

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  • Timothée Demont, 2020. "Coping with shocks: the impact of Self-Help Groups on migration and food security," AMSE Working Papers 2016, Aix-Marseille School of Economics, France.
  • Handle: RePEc:aim:wpaimx:2016
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    microfinance; weather shocks; risk management; seasonal migration; food security;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • O13 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Agriculture; Natural Resources; Environment; Other Primary Products
    • O15 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Economic Development: Human Resources; Human Development; Income Distribution; Migration
    • G21 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Banks; Other Depository Institutions; Micro Finance Institutions; Mortgages
    • Q54 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Climate; Natural Disasters and their Management; Global Warming

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