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Social Interactions and Malaria Preventive Behaviors in Sub-Saharan Africa

  • Apouey, B.
  • Picone, G.

This paper examines the existence of social interactions in malaria preventive behaviors in Sub-Saharan Africa, i.e. whether an individual's social environment has an influence on the individual's preventive behaviors. We focus on the two population groups which are the most vulnerable to malaria (children under 5 and pregnant women) and on two preventive behaviors (sleeping under a bednet and taking intermittent preventive treatment during pregnancy). We define the social environment of the individual as people living in the same region. To detect social interactions, we calculate the size of the social multiplier by comparing the effects of anexogenous variable at the individual level and at the regional level. Our data come from 92 surveys for 29 Sub-Saharan countries between 1999 and 2012, and they cover approximately 660,000 children and 95,000 women. Our results indicate that social interactions are important in malaria preventive behaviors, since the social mulitpliers for women's education and household wealth are greater than one - which means that education and wealth generates larger effects on preventive behaviors in the long run than we would expect from the individual-level specifications, once we account for social interactions.

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Paper provided by HEDG, c/o Department of Economics, University of York in its series Health, Econometrics and Data Group (HEDG) Working Papers with number 14/06.

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Date of creation: Jan 2014
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Handle: RePEc:yor:hectdg:14/06
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  1. Bryan S. Graham, 2008. "Identifying Social Interactions Through Conditional Variance Restrictions," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 76(3), pages 643-660, 05.
  2. Manski, C.F., 1991. "Identification of Endogenous Social Effects: the Reflection Problem," Working papers 9127, Wisconsin Madison - Social Systems.
  3. Edward L. Glaeser & Bruce I. Sacerdote & Jose A. Scheinkman, 2003. "The Social Multiplier," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 1(2-3), pages 345-353, 04/05.
  4. Hongyi Li & G. S. Maddala, 1999. "Bootstrap Variance Estimation Of Nonlinear Functions Of Parameters: An Application To Long-Run Elasticities Of Energy Demand," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 81(4), pages 728-733, November.
  5. Bernheim, B Douglas, 1994. "A Theory of Conformity," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 102(5), pages 841-77, October.
  6. G. Ellison & D. Fudenberg, 2010. "Rules of Thumb for Social Learning," Levine's Working Paper Archive 435, David K. Levine.
  7. Timothy G. Conley & Christopher R. Udry, 2005. "Learning about a new technology: pineapple in Ghana," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
  8. Jessica Cohen & Pascaline Dupas, 2010. "Free Distribution or Cost-Sharing? Evidence from a Randomized Malaria Prevention Experiment," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 125(1), pages 1-45.
  9. Auld, M. Christopher, 2011. "Effect of large-scale social interactions on body weight," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 30(2), pages 303-316, March.
  10. Graham, Bryan S. & Hahn, Jinyong, 2005. "Identification and estimation of the linear-in-means model of social interactions," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 88(1), pages 1-6, July.
  11. Pascaline Dupas, 2009. "What Matters (and What Does Not) in Households' Decision to Invest in Malaria Prevention?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 99(2), pages 224-30, May.
  12. repec:hal:wpaper:halshs-00911364 is not listed on IDEAS
  13. Edward E. Glaeser & Bruce Sacerdote & Jose A. Scheinkman, 1995. "Crime and Social Interactions," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1738, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
  14. Angrist, Joshua D & Krueger, Alan B, 1995. "Split-Sample Instrumental Variables Estimates of the Return to Schooling," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 13(2), pages 225-35, April.
  15. Gabriel Picone & Robyn Kibler & Bénédicte H. Apouey, 2013. "Malaria prevalence, indoor residual spraying, and insecticide-treated net usage in Sub-Saharan Africa," PSE Working Papers halshs-00911364, HAL.
  16. Jessica Cohen & Pascaline Dupas, 2008. "Free Distribution or Cost-Sharing? Evidence from a Malaria Prevention Experiment," NBER Working Papers 14406, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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