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Maternal Mortality and Women's Political Participation

Author

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  • Bhalotra, Sonia R.

    (University of Warwick)

  • Clarke, Damian

    (University of Chile)

  • Gomes, Joseph

    (University of Navarra)

  • Venkataramani, Atheendar

    (Massachusetts General Hospital)

Abstract

Raising women's political participation leads to faster maternal mortality decline. We estimate that the introduction of quotas for women in parliament results in a 9 to 12% decline in maternal mortality. In terms of mechanisms, it also leads to an 8 to 11% increase in skilled birth attendance and a 6 to 11% increase in prenatal care utilization. We find reinforcing evidence from the period in which the United States experienced rapid declines in maternal mortality. The historical decline made feasible by the introduction of antibiotics was significantly greater in states that had longer exposure to women's suffrage.

Suggested Citation

  • Bhalotra, Sonia R. & Clarke, Damian & Gomes, Joseph & Venkataramani, Atheendar, 2018. "Maternal Mortality and Women's Political Participation," IZA Discussion Papers 11590, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp11590
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    Cited by:

    1. Sugat Chaturvedi & Sabyasachi Das & Kanika Mahajan, 2021. "The importance of being earnest: What explains the gender quota effect in politics?," Discussion Papers 21-02, Indian Statistical Institute, Delhi.
    2. Issa Dianda & Idrissa Ouedraogo & Jean de dieu Goumbri, 2021. "Closing the Gender Gap in Secondary School Enrolment in sub-Saharan Africa: Does women's political empowerment matter?," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 41(2), pages 544-552.
    3. Bhalotra, Sonia & Clots-Figueras, Irma & Iyer, Lakshmi, 2021. "Religion and abortion: The role of politician identity," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 153(C).
    4. Bhalotra, Sonia R. & Rocha, Rudi & Soares, Rodrigo R., 2019. "Does Universalization of Health Work? Evidence from Health Systems Restructuring and Expansion in Brazil," IZA Discussion Papers 12111, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    5. Sonia Bhalotra & Rudi Rocha & Rodrigo R. Soares, 2020. "Can Universalization of Health Work? Evidence from Health Systems Restructuring and Expansion in Brazil," Working Papers 03, Instituto de Estudos para Políticas de Saúde.
    6. Ogbuagu Matthew Ikechukwu & Olunkwa Ndubuisi Chidi & Ogbuagu Chukwunonso Valentine, 2020. "Impact of Capital Health Expenditure on Infant-Maternal Mortality in Nigeria," Academic Journal of Economic Studies, Faculty of Finance, Banking and Accountancy Bucharest,"Dimitrie Cantemir" Christian University Bucharest, vol. 6(1), pages 85-92, March.
    7. Raphael Bruce & Alexsandros Cavgias, Luis Meloni, Mario Remigio, 2021. "Under Pressure: Women's Leadership During the COVID-19 Crisis," Working Papers, Department of Economics 2021_19, University of São Paulo (FEA-USP).
    8. Kumar, Rahul & Maity, Bipasha, 2021. "Cultural Norms and Women's Health: Implications of the Practice of Menstrual Restrictions in Nepal," GLO Discussion Paper Series 907, Global Labor Organization (GLO).

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    quotas; gender; women's political representation; maternal mortality; suffrage;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • I14 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Health and Inequality
    • I15 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Health and Economic Development
    • O15 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Economic Development: Human Resources; Human Development; Income Distribution; Migration

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