Food for Thought: Basic Needs and Persistent Educational Inequality
This research demonstrates that human capital accumulation by the poor is only possible if a minimum level of health and well-being has been attained. When families do not have enough resources to invest in the satisfaction of basic needs and health care, and finance is not available for this purpose, a poverty trap exists with low health, education and income. These poverty traps may persist if policies financing education are applied which do not also address deficiencies in nutrition and health impairing human potential, and in particular early child development. This link between health and education contributes to explain the important, long-term effects of nutrition and health on economic growth and implies that nutrition and health play a causal role in the persistence of inequality and in the effects of inequality on growth.
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