Selective Mortality or Growth after Childhood? What Really is Key to Understand the Puzzlingly Tall Adult Heights in Sub-Saharan Africa
Sub-Sahara African populations are tall relative to the extremely adverse disease environment and their low incomes. Selective mortality, which removes shorter individuals leaving taller individuals in the population, was proposed as an explanation. From heights of surviving and non-surviving children in Gambia, we estimate the size of the survivorship bias and find it to be too small to account for the tall adult heights observed in sub-Saharan Africa. We propose instead a different yet widely ignored explanation: African populations attain a tall adult stature, because they can make up a significant amount of the growth shortfall after age 5. This pattern is in striking contrast to other developing countries. Moreover, mortality rates are relatively low after age 5 adding further doubts about selective mortality.
|Date of creation:||2010|
|Date of revision:|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: |
Phone: +44-(0)1865 271084
Fax: +44-(0)1865 281447
Web page: http://www.csae.ox.ac.uk/
More information through EDIRC
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Akachi, Yoko & Canning, David, 2010. "Health trends in Sub-Saharan Africa: Conflicting evidence from infant mortality rates and adult heights," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, vol. 8(2), pages 273-288, July.
- Philippe Robert-Demontrond & R. Ringoot, 2004. "Introduction," Post-Print halshs-00081823, HAL.
- Moradi, Alexander, 2010.
"Nutritional status and economic development in sub-Saharan Africa, 1950-1980,"
Economics & Human Biology,
Elsevier, vol. 8(1), pages 16-29, March.
- Alexander Moradi, 2006. "Nutritional status and economic development in sub-Saharan Africa, 1950-1980," Economics Series Working Papers GPRG-WPS-046, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
- McEvoy, Brian P. & Visscher, Peter M., 2009. "Genetics of human height," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, vol. 7(3), pages 294-306, December.
- Rosenzweig, Mark R, 1986. "Birth Spacing and Sibling Inequality: Asymmetric Information within the Family," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 27(1), pages 55-76, February.
- Carlos Bozzoli & Angus Deaton & Climent Quintana-Domeque, 2008.
"Adult height and childhood disease,"
1119, Princeton University, Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Research Program in Development Studies..
- Alexander Moradi, 2008.
"Towards an Objective Account of Nutrition and Health in Colonial Kenya: A Study of Stature in African Army Recruits and Civilians, 1880-1980,"
CSAE Working Paper Series
2008-04, Centre for the Study of African Economies, University of Oxford.
- Moradi, Alexander, 2009. "Towards an Objective Account of Nutrition and Health in Colonial Kenya: A Study of Stature in African Army Recruits and Civilians, 1880–1980," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 69(03), pages 719-754, September.
- Denis Cogneau & Léa Rouanet, 2009.
"Living Conditions in Côte d'Ivoire, Ghana and Western Africa 1925-1985: What Do Survey Data on Height Stature Tell Us?,"
DT/2009/12, DIAL (Développement, Institutions et Mondialisation).
- Rouanet, Léa & Cogneau, Denis, 2011. "Living Conditions in Côte d'Ivoire, Ghana and Western Africa 1925-1985: What do Survey Data on Height Stature tell us?," Economics Papers from University Paris Dauphine 123456789/4300, Paris Dauphine University.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:csa:wpaper:2010-17. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Richard Payne)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.