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War during Childhood: The Long Run Effects of Warfare on Health

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  • Akbulut-Yuksel, Mevlude

    (Dalhousie University)

Abstract

This paper estimates the causal long-term consequences of an exposure to war in utero and during childhood on the risk of obesity and the probability of having a chronic health condition in adulthood. Using the plausibly exogenous city-by-cohort variation in the intensity of WWII destruction as a unique quasi-experiment, I find that individuals who were exposed to WWII destruction during the prenatal and early postnatal periods have higher BMIs and are more likely to be obese as adults. I also find an elevated incidence of chronic health conditions such as stroke, hypertension, diabetes, and cardiovascular disorder in adulthood among these wartime children.

Suggested Citation

  • Akbulut-Yuksel, Mevlude, 2017. "War during Childhood: The Long Run Effects of Warfare on Health," IZA Discussion Papers 10807, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp10807
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    2. Richard Akresh & German Daniel Caruso & Harsha Thirumurthy, 2014. "Medium-Term Health Impacts of Shocks Experienced In Utero and After Birth: Evidence from Detailed Geographic Information on War Exposure," NBER Working Papers 20763, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Dagnelie, Olivier & Luca, Giacomo Davide De & Maystadt, Jean-François, 2018. "Violence, selection and infant mortality in Congo," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 59(C), pages 153-177.
    4. Cámara, Antonio D. & Puche, Javier & Martínez-Carrión, José Miguel, 2021. "Assessing the effects of autarchic policies on the biological well-being: Analysis of deviations in cohort male height in the Valencian Community (Spain) during Francoist regime," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 273(C).
    5. Allais, Olivier & Fagherazzi, Guy & Mink, Julia, 2021. "The long-run effects of war on health: Evidence from World War II in France," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 276(C).
    6. Abeliansky, Ana Lucia & Strulik, Holger, 2018. "Hungry children age faster," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, vol. 29(C), pages 211-220.
    7. Takahiro Tsujimoto & Yoko Kijima, 2020. "Effects of conflict on child health: Evidence from the 1990–1994 Northern Mali Conflict," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 29(11), pages 1456-1474, November.
    8. Fredah Guantai & Yoko Kijima, 2020. "Ethnic Violence and Birth Outcomes: Evidence From Exposure to the 1992 Conflict in Kenya," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 57(2), pages 423-444, April.
    9. Gabriella Conti & Giacomo Mason & Stavros Poupakis, 2019. "Developmental origins of health inequality," IFS Working Papers W19/17, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
    10. Singhal, Saurabh, 2019. "Early life shocks and mental health: The long-term effect of war in Vietnam," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 141(C).
    11. Phadera, Lokendra, 2021. "Unfortunate Moms and Unfortunate Children: Impact of the Nepali Civil War on Women's Stature and Intergenerational Health," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 76(C).
    12. Manian, Shanthi, 2021. "Conflict and risky health behavior: Evidence from Mexico's drug war," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 148(C).
    13. Richard Akresh & German Daniel Caruso & Harsha Thirumurthy, 2016. "Detailed Geographic Information, Conflict Exposure, and Health Impacts," HiCN Working Papers 238, Households in Conflict Network.
    14. Saurabh Singhal, 2018. "Early life shocks and mental health: The long-term effect of war in Vietnam," WIDER Working Paper Series 65, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
    15. Akresh, Richard & Bhalotra, Sonia R. & Leone, Marinella & Osili, Una O., 2017. "First and Second Generation Impacts of the Biafran War," IZA Discussion Papers 10938, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    16. Grossman, Daniel & Khalil, Umair & Ray, Arijit, 2019. "Terrorism and early childhood health outcomes: Evidence from Pakistan," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 237(C), pages 1-1.
    17. Youhong Lin, 2020. "Unleash the Pandora's Box: Political Turmoil and Malaria Outbreak During China's Cultural Revolution," Australian Economic History Review, Economic History Society of Australia and New Zealand, vol. 60(2), pages 220-249, July.
    18. Reyn van Ewijk & Maarten Lindeboom, 2016. "Why people born during World War II are healthier," Working Papers 1619, Gutenberg School of Management and Economics, Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz.
    19. Norling, Johannes, 2020. "Education and employment following apartheid protests," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 77(C).
    20. Lin, Chung-Liang, 2021. "Postpartum medical utilization: The role of prenatal economic activity and living costs," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, vol. 41(C).
    21. Tushar Bharati, 2020. "The Long Shadow of the Kargil War," Economics Discussion / Working Papers 20-02, The University of Western Australia, Department of Economics.
    22. Rakesh Banerjee & Tushar Bharati, 2020. "Mass shootings and Infant Health in the United States," Economics Discussion / Working Papers 20-16, The University of Western Australia, Department of Economics.
    23. Abeliansky, Ana Lucia & Strulik, Holger, 2020. "Season of birth, health and aging," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, vol. 36(C).

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    health conditions; body size; warfare; children;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • I10 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - General
    • I12 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Health Behavior
    • J13 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Fertility; Family Planning; Child Care; Children; Youth

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