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The Effects of the War in Iraq on Nutrition and Health: An Analysis Using Anthropometric Outcomes of Children

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  • Gabriela Guerrero-Serdán

    () (Royal Holloway College, University of London)

Abstract

The war in Iraq initiated in March 2003 triggered a wave of violence and turmoil in the country, exposing households to insecurity and to instability in daily life. The level of violence has varied across provinces, the south and centre areas being the most affected. Using the different intensities of the conflict across areas and the age at exposure to the war among cohorts, I analyze a possible causal effect of the war on nutritional outcomes of children. I use two empirical strategies, leading to very similar results. Estimates indicate that children born in areas affected by high levels of violence are 0.8 cm shorter than children born in low violence provinces. These results are robust to several specifications. Furthermore, the paper also addresses the channels through which the conflict has affected health and nutrition. The results have not only short-term policy implications, but also, given the empirical evidence of the impact of early child malnutrition on later education, labour and productivity outcomes, the results are of great importance for the future.

Suggested Citation

  • Gabriela Guerrero-Serdán, 2009. "The Effects of the War in Iraq on Nutrition and Health: An Analysis Using Anthropometric Outcomes of Children," HiCN Working Papers 55, Households in Conflict Network.
  • Handle: RePEc:hic:wpaper:55
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    Cited by:

    1. Michael Malcolm & Vidya Diwakar & George Naufal, 2020. "Child Discipline in Times of Conflict," Journal of Conflict Resolution, Peace Science Society (International), vol. 64(6), pages 1070-1094, July.
    2. Parlow, Anton, 2017. "Political Violence, Domestic Violence, and Children's Health: The Case of Pakistan," MPRA Paper 82966, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    3. Martin-Shields, Charles P. & Stojetz, Wolfgang, 2019. "Food security and conflict: Empirical challenges and future opportunities for research and policy making on food security and conflict," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 119(C), pages 150-164.
    4. Muhammad Badiuzzaman & Syed Mansoob Murshed, 2016. "Impact of post-conflict development interventions on maternal healthcare utilization," WIDER Working Paper Series 082, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
    5. Parlow, Anton, 2012. "Armed conflict and children's health - exploring new directions: The case of Kashmir," MPRA Paper 38033, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    6. Cho, Yoonyoung, 2011. "Informality and protection from health shocks : lessons from Yemen," Policy Research Working Paper Series 5746, The World Bank.
    7. Singh, Prakarsh, 2011. "Impact of terrorism on investment decisions of farmers: evidence from the Punjab insurgency," MPRA Paper 33328, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    8. Anton Parlow, 2012. "Armed Conflict and Children’s Health – Exploring new directions: The case of Kashmir," HiCN Working Papers 119, Households in Conflict Network.
    9. Patricia Justino & Marinella Leone & Paola Salardi, 2011. "Education and Conflict Recovery: The Case of Timor Leste," HiCN Working Papers 100, Households in Conflict Network.
    10. Anton Parlow, 2016. "State and Development: Child Mortality and the War on Terror: Afghanistan from 2007 to 2010," HiCN Working Papers 220, Households in Conflict Network.
    11. Armand Mboutchouang Kountchou & Soazic Elise Wang Sonne & Gadom Djal Gadom, 2019. "The Local Impact of Armed Conflict on Children’s Nutrition and Health Outcomes: Evidence from Chad," HiCN Working Papers 301, Households in Conflict Network.
    12. Diwakar, Vidya & Malcolm, Michael & Naufal, George S, 2017. "Violent Conflict and Breastfeeding: The Case of Iraq," IZA Discussion Papers 10937, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    13. Patricia Justino, 2012. "Nutrition, Governance and Violence: A Framework for the Analysis of Resilience and Vulnerability to Food Insecurity in Contexts of Violent Conflict," HiCN Working Papers 132, Households in Conflict Network.
    14. Patricia Justino, 2017. "Food Security, Peacebuilding and Gender Equality: Conceptual Framework and Future Directions," HiCN Working Papers 257, Households in Conflict Network.
    15. Justino, Patricia, 2016. "Supply and demand restrictions to education in conflict-affected countries: New research and future agendas," International Journal of Educational Development, Elsevier, vol. 47(C), pages 76-85.
    16. Silvia Jarauta Bernal, 2011. "Beyond Coping. Risk Management in the West Bank," Research Working Papers 42, MICROCON - A Micro Level Analysis of Violent Conflict.
    17. Tranchant, Jean-Pierre & Justino, Patricia & Müller, Cathérine, 2020. "Political violence, adverse shocks and child malnutrition: Empirical evidence from Andhra Pradesh, India," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, vol. 39(C).
    18. Muhammad Badiuzzaman & Syed Mansoob Murshed, 2016. "Impact of post-conflict development interventions on maternal healthcare utilization," WIDER Working Paper Series wp-2016-82, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    health; nutrition; shocks; war; children; Iraq;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • I10 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - General
    • J10 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - General
    • O15 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Economic Development: Human Resources; Human Development; Income Distribution; Migration

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