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The Impacts of a Multifaceted Pre-natal Intervention on Human Capital Accumulation in Early Life


  • Carneiro, Pedro

    (University College London)

  • Kraftman, Lucy

    (Institute for Fiscal Studies, London)

  • Mason, Giacomo

    (Competition and Markets Authority)

  • Moore, Lucie


  • Rasul, Imran

    (University College London)

  • Scott, Molly



We evaluate an intervention targeting early life nutrition and well-being for households in extreme poverty in Northern Nigeria. The intervention leads to large and sustained improvements in children's anthropometric and health outcomes, including an 8% reduction in stunting four years post-intervention. These impacts are partly driven by information-related channels. However, the certain and substantial flow of cash transfers is also key. They induce positive labor supply responses among women, and enables them to undertake productive investments in livestock. These provide protein rich diets for children, and generate higher household earnings streams long after the cash transfers expire.

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  • Carneiro, Pedro & Kraftman, Lucy & Mason, Giacomo & Moore, Lucie & Rasul, Imran & Scott, Molly, 2020. "The Impacts of a Multifaceted Pre-natal Intervention on Human Capital Accumulation in Early Life," IZA Discussion Papers 13955, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp13955

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

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    2. Premand, Patrick & Barry, Oumar, 2022. "Behavioral change promotion, cash transfers and early childhood development: Experimental evidence from a government program in a low-income setting," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 158(C).
    3. Siddique, Abu & Islam, Asad & Mozumder, Tanvir Ahmed & Rahman, Tabassum & Shatil, Tanvir, 2022. "Forced Displacement, Mental Health, and Child Development: Evidence from the Rohingya Refugees," SocArXiv b4fc7, Center for Open Science.
    4. Grosch, Kerstin & Haeckl, Simone & Kocher , Martin G., 2022. "Closing the gender STEM gap. A large-scale randomized-controlled trial in elementary schools," UiS Working Papers in Economics and Finance 2022/4, University of Stavanger.
    5. Orazio Attanasio & Sarah Cattan & Costas Meghir, 2021. "Early Childhood Development, Human Capital and Poverty," NBER Working Papers 29362, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. de Groot, Richard & Yablonski, Jennifer & Valli, Elsa, 2022. "The impact of cash and health insurance on child nutrition during the first 1000 days: Evidence from Ghana," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 107(C).
    7. Araújo, Daniel & Carrillo, Bladimir & Sampaio, Breno, 2021. "The Long-Run Economic Consequences of Iodine Supplementation," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 79(C).
    8. Duncan Webb, 2022. "Critical Periods in Cognitive and Socioemotional Development: Evidence from Weather Shocks in Indonesia," PSE Working Papers halshs-03542607, HAL.
    9. Johannes M. Bos & Akib Khan & Saravana Ravindran & Abu S. Shonchoy, 2021. "Early Childhood Human Capital Formation at Scale," Working Papers 2115, Florida International University, Department of Economics.
    10. Monteiro Amaral,Sofia Fernando & Dinarte Diaz,Lelys Ileana & Dominguez,Patricio & Perez-Vincent,Santiago M., 2021. "Helping Families Help Themselves ? Heterogeneous Effects of a Digital Parenting Program," Policy Research Working Paper Series 9850, The World Bank.
    11. Duncan Webb, 2022. "Critical Periods in Cognitive and Socioemotional Development: Evidence from Weather Shocks in Indonesia," Working Papers halshs-03542607, HAL.
    12. Fink, Günther & Venkataramani, Atheendar S. & Zanolini, Arianna, 2021. "Early life adversity, biological adaptation, and human capital: evidence from an interrupted malaria control program in Zambia," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 80(C).

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    More about this item


    cash transfers; nutrition;

    JEL classification:

    • 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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