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Disease and Development Revisited

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  • Bloom, David E.

    (Harvard University)

  • Canning, David

    (Harvard School of Public Health)

  • Fink, Günther

    (Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute)

Abstract

Acemoglu and Johnson (2007) present evidence that improvements in population health do not promote economic growth. We show that their result depends critically on the assumption that initial health has no causal effect on subsequent economic growth. We argue that such an effect is likely, primarily because childhood health affects adult productivity. In our augmented model, which includes initial health, the instrumental variable proposed by Acemoglu and Johnson has no significant predictive power for improvements in health and does not identify the effect of contemporaneous improvements in health on economic growth.

Suggested Citation

  • Bloom, David E. & Canning, David & Fink, Günther, 2013. "Disease and Development Revisited," IZA Discussion Papers 7391, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp7391
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    economic growth; development; health;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • I10 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - General
    • O40 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - General

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