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Women’s Empowerment and Family Health: Estimating LATE with Mismeasured Treatment


  • Rossella Calvi

    (Rice University)

  • Arthur Lewbel

    () (Boston College)

  • Denni Tommasi

    () (Monash University)


We study the impact of women’s decision making power on family health in India. We define treatment as a woman having primary control over household resources, using changes in inheritance laws as an instrument. Due to measurement difficulties and sharing of goods, treatment cannot be directly observed and must be estimated using a structural model. Treatment mismeasurement may therefore arise from model misspecification and estimation errors. We provide a new estimation method, MR-LATE, that under some conditions can con- sistently estimate local average treatment effects when treatment is mismeasured. When such conditions are not satisfied, MR-LATE is still effective at reducing estimation bias. We find that women’s control of household resources improves their and their children’s health at no cost to men’s health. We also show that accounting for measurement error in the estimated treatment is empirically important.

Suggested Citation

  • Rossella Calvi & Arthur Lewbel & Denni Tommasi, 2018. "Women’s Empowerment and Family Health: Estimating LATE with Mismeasured Treatment," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 959, Boston College Department of Economics, revised 31 Dec 2019.
  • Handle: RePEc:boc:bocoec:959

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    Cited by:

    1. Takahide Yanagi, 2019. "Inference on local average treatment effects for misclassified treatment," Econometric Reviews, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 38(8), pages 938-960, September.
    2. Klein, Matthew J. & Barham, Bradford L., 2018. "Point Estimates of Household Bargaining Power Using Outside Options," Staff Paper Series 590, University of Wisconsin, Agricultural and Applied Economics.
    3. Tommasi, Denni & Zhang, Lina, 2020. "Bounding Program Benefits When Participation Is Misreported," IZA Discussion Papers 13430, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    4. Arthur Lewbel, 2019. "The Identification Zoo: Meanings of Identification in Econometrics," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 57(4), pages 835-903, December.
    5. Arthur Lewbel & Xirong Lin, 2019. "Identification of Semiparametric Model Coefficients, With an Application to Collective Households," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 1002, Boston College Department of Economics, revised 31 Jan 2021.
    6. Lina Zhang, 2020. "Spillovers of Program Benefits with Mismeasured Networks," Papers 2009.09614,
    7. Victor Hiller & Nouhoum Touré, 2020. "Endogenous Gender Power: The Two Facets of Empowerment," Working Papers 2020.04, International Network for Economic Research - INFER.
    8. Sung Jae Jun & Sokbae (Simon) Lee, 2018. "Identifying the effect of persuasion," CeMMAP working papers CWP19/18, Centre for Microdata Methods and Practice, Institute for Fiscal Studies.

    More about this item


    causality; LATE; structural model; collective model; resource shares; bargaining power; health;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • D13 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Household Production and Intrahouse Allocation
    • D11 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Consumer Economics: Theory
    • D12 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Consumer Economics: Empirical Analysis
    • C31 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Multiple or Simultaneous Equation Models; Multiple Variables - - - Cross-Sectional Models; Spatial Models; Treatment Effect Models; Quantile Regressions; Social Interaction Models
    • I32 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - Measurement and Analysis of Poverty

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