IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

Housing, Health and Happiness

  • Matias Cattaneo

    (Department of Economics, University of Michigan)

  • Sebastian Galiani

    (Department of Economics, Washington University in St. Louis)

  • Paul Gertler

    (Haas Business School, University of California)

  • Sebastian Martinez

    (World Bank)

  • Rocio Titiunik

    (Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics, University of California)

Despite the importance of housing for people’s well-being, there is little evidence on the causal impact of housing and housing improvement programs on health and welfare. In this paper, we help to fill this gap by investigating the impact of a large-scale effort by the Mexican Government to replace dirt floors with cement floors on child health and adult happiness. We find that replacing dirt floors with cement floors significantly improves the health of young children. Specifically, we find significant decreases in the incidence of parasitic infestations, diarrhea, and the prevalence of anemia, and an improvement in children’s cognitive development. Additionally, we find that replacing dirt floors by cement floors significantly improves adult welfare, as measured by increased satisfaction with their housing and quality of life, as well as by lower scores on depression and perceived stress scales.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL:
Download Restriction: no

Paper provided by CEDLAS, Universidad Nacional de La Plata in its series CEDLAS, Working Papers with number 0074.

in new window

Length: 40 pages
Date of creation: Aug 2008
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:dls:wpaper:0074
Contact details of provider: Postal: Calle 48 No555 - La Plata (1900)
Phone: 21- 1466
Fax: 54-21-25-9536
Web page:

More information through EDIRC

References listed on IDEAS
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.:

as in new window
  1. Edgar O. Olsen, 2001. "Housing Programs for Low-Income Households," NBER Working Papers 8208, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. A. Colin Cameron & Jonah B. Gelbach & Douglas L. Miller, 2007. "Bootstrap-Based Improvements for Inference with Clustered Errors," NBER Technical Working Papers 0344, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Behrman, Jere R, 1996. "The Impact of Health and Nutrition on Education," World Bank Research Observer, World Bank Group, vol. 11(1), pages 23-37, February.
  4. H. Kelejian, Harry & Prucha, Ingmar R., 2001. "On the asymptotic distribution of the Moran I test statistic with applications," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 104(2), pages 219-257, September.
  5. Christina Paxson & Norbert Schady, 2005. "Cognitive Development Among Young Children in Ecuador: The Roles of Wealth, Health and Parenting," Working Papers 239, Princeton University, Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Center for Health and Wellbeing..
  6. Paul Gertler, 2004. "Do Conditional Cash Transfers Improve Child Health? Evidence from PROGRESA's Control Randomized Experiment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(2), pages 336-341, May.
  7. Daniel Kahneman & Alan B. Krueger, 2006. "Developments in the Measurement of Subjective Well-Being," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 20(1), pages 3-24, Winter.
  8. Emmanuel Jimenez, 1983. "The Magnitude and Determinants of Home Improvement in Self-Help Housing: Manila's Tondo Project," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 59(1), pages 70-83.
  9. Kaufmann, Daniel & Quigley, John M., 1987. "The consumption benefits of investment in infrastructure : The evaluation of sites-and-services programs in underdeveloped countries," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 25(2), pages 263-284, April.
  10. Lawrence F. Katz & Jeffrey R. Kling & Jeffrey B. Liebman, 2000. "Moving to Opportunity in Boston: Early Results of a Randomized Mobility Experiment," NBER Working Papers 7973, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Sebastian Galiani & Paul Gertler & Ernesto Schargrodsky, 2005. "Water for Life: The Impact of the Privatization of Water Services on Child Mortality," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 113(1), pages 83-120, February.
  12. World Bank, 2002. "World Development Indicators 2002," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 13921, March.
  13. Heckman, James J. & Masterov, Dimitriy V., 2007. "The Productivity Argument for Investing in Young Children," IZA Discussion Papers 2725, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  14. Kenneth Y. Chay & Michael Greenstone, 2005. "Does Air Quality Matter? Evidence from the Housing Market," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 113(2), pages 376-424, April.
  15. Lee Cronbach, 1951. "Coefficient alpha and the internal structure of tests," Psychometrika, Springer, vol. 16(3), pages 297-334, September.
  16. James Heckman & Pedro Carneiro, 2003. "Human Capital Policy," NBER Working Papers 9495, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  17. Takeuchi, Akie & Cropper, Maureen & Bento, Antonio, 2006. "The welfare effects of slum improvement programs : the case of Mumbai," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3852, The World Bank.
  18. Rafael Di Tella & Robert MacCulloch, 2006. "Some Uses of Happiness Data in Economics," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 20(1), pages 25-46, Winter.
  19. Edward Miguel & Michael Kremer, 2004. "Worms: Identifying Impacts on Education and Health in the Presence of Treatment Externalities," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 72(1), pages 159-217, 01.
  20. repec:wbk:wbpubs:12426 is not listed on IDEAS
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is featured on the following reading lists or Wikipedia pages:

  1. Housing, Health, and Happiness (AEJ:EP 2009) in ReplicationWiki

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:dls:wpaper:0074. 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: (Ana Pacheco)

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.