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The Impact of Fundamentalist Terrorism on School Enrolment: Evidence from North-Western Pakistan, 2004-09

Author

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  • Khan, Sarah

    () (University of Göttingen)

  • Seltzer, Andrew

    () (Royal Holloway, University of London)

Abstract

Islamist groups in Afghanistan, Pakistan, and elsewhere have sought to remove females from public life. This paper uses data from Pakistan Social and Living Standards Measurement and the Global Terrorism Database to examine the impact of the Pakistani Taliban's terror campaign in the north-western province of Khyber Pukhtoonkhwa aimed at removing girls from school from the age of 10. Using a difference-in-difference-indifference approach, we show that low levels of exposure to terrorism had little effect on school enrolment. High levels of exposure reduced the enrolment rate for boys by about 5.5 percent and girls by about 10.5 percent. This decline in enrolment, although strongly significant, is far smaller than has commonly been portrayed in the media. Finally, although the Taliban warned students to enrol in madrassas rather than secular schools, we find no evidence that this led to increased madrassa enrolment in the affected regions.

Suggested Citation

  • Khan, Sarah & Seltzer, Andrew, 2016. "The Impact of Fundamentalist Terrorism on School Enrolment: Evidence from North-Western Pakistan, 2004-09," IZA Discussion Papers 10168, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp10168
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Shemyakina, Olga, 2011. "The effect of armed conflict on accumulation of schooling: Results from Tajikistan," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 95(2), pages 186-200, July.
    2. Janet Currie & Enrico Moretti, 2003. "Mother's Education and the Intergenerational Transmission of Human Capital: Evidence from College Openings," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 118(4), pages 1495-1532.
    3. Mevlude Akbulut-Yuksel, 2014. "Children of War: The Long-Run Effects of Large-Scale Physical Destruction and Warfare on Children," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 49(3), pages 634-662.
    4. Andrabi, Tahir & Das, Jishnu & Khwaja, Asim Ijaz & Zajonc, Tristan, 2005. "Religious school enrollment in Pakistan : a look at the data," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3521, The World Bank.
    5. Eik Leong Swee, 2009. "On War and Schooling Attainment: The Case of Bosnia and Herzegovina," HiCN Working Papers 57, Households in Conflict Network.
    6. Chamarbagwala, Rubiana & Morán, Hilcías E., 2011. "The human capital consequences of civil war: Evidence from Guatemala," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 94(1), pages 41-61, January.
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    Cited by:

    1. Eleonora Bertoni & Michele Di Maio & Vasco Molini & Roberto Nisticò, 2018. "Education is Forbidden: The Effect of the Boko Haram Conflict on Education in North-East Nigeria," CSEF Working Papers 495, Centre for Studies in Economics and Finance (CSEF), University of Naples, Italy.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    education; terrorism; Pakistan;

    JEL classification:

    • O15 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Economic Development: Human Resources; Human Development; Income Distribution; Migration
    • I25 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Education and Economic Development
    • D74 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Conflict; Conflict Resolution; Alliances; Revolutions
    • O53 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economywide Country Studies - - - Asia including Middle East

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