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Adult health in the time of drought

  • Hoddinott, John
  • Kinsey, Bill

This paper examines the impact of rainfall shocks on a measure of adult health, body mass, drawing on a unique panel data set of households residing in rural Zimbabwe. Controlling for individual, household, and community factors, and individual fixed, unobservable effects, we find women, but not men, are adversely affected by drought. However, these effects are not borne equally by all women. Women residing in poor households and daughters more generally appear to bear the brunt of this shock. Our results suggest that an ex ante private coping strategy, the accumulation of livestock, protects women against the adverse consequences of this shock. By contrast, we find that ex post public responses are not effective, though for several reasons we treat this finding with caution.

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Paper provided by International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) in its series FCND discussion papers with number 79.

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Date of creation: 2000
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Handle: RePEc:fpr:fcnddp:79
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  1. Trudy Owens & John Hoddinott, 1998. "Investing in development or investing in relief: quantifying the poverty tradeoffs using Zimbabwe household panel data," Economics Series Working Papers WPS/1999-04, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
  2. Hoddinott, John & Kinsey, Bill, 2001. " Child Growth in the Time of Drought," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 63(4), pages 409-36, September.
  3. Jacoby, Hanan G & Skoufias, Emmanuel, 1997. "Risk, Financial Markets, and Human Capital in a Developing Country," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 64(3), pages 311-35, July.
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