The Effects of Mobile Phone Infrastructure: Evidence from Rural Peru
We exploit the timing of cell phone coverage in rural Peru to investigate its effects on economic development. We exploit information regarding the location, date of installation and technical characteristics of cell phone towers in order to construct coverage patterns at the village level from 2001 through 2007. We then merge this information with national household surveys spanning the same period. Estimates suggest an increase of 7 percentage points in the likelihood of self reported cell phone ownership after coverage, an increase of 7.5 percent in yearly household expenditures, and a 13.5 percent increase in the value of assets.
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