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The Impact of ICT Development on Health Outcomes in Africa: Does Economic Freedom Matter?

Jeffrey Kouton (), Rafiou R. Bétila and Moïse Lawin
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Jeffrey Kouton: Ecole Nationale Supérieure de Statistique et d’Economie Appliquée
Rafiou R. Bétila: Ecole Nationale Supérieure de Statistique et d’Economie Appliquée
Moïse Lawin: Ecole Nationale Supérieure de Statistique et d’Economie Appliquée

Journal of the Knowledge Economy, 2021, vol. 12, issue 4, No 14, 1830-1869

Abstract: Abstract This study aims to (i) examine the role of economic freedom in ICT diffusion in Africa and (ii) examine how economic freedom complements ICT development to influence health outcomes in thirty-five (35) African countries for the period 2000–2016. Health outcome is measured by the under-five mortality, an ICT development index is constructed, and the Index of Economic Freedom of the Heritage Foundation is used. First, the results show that economic freedom is necessary for ICT diffusion, but the mechanism generating the diffusion effect is not valid beyond 2 consecutive years. Second, the net effect on under-five mortality is negative from the complementarity between economic freedom and ICT development. Overall, the results suggest that economic freedom matters in the relationship between ICT development and health outcomes by playing a critical role in enhancing ICT diffusion.

Keywords: Information Communication Technologies; Economic freedom; Health outcomes; C33; I12; O33; O55 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2021
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DOI: 10.1007/s13132-020-00689-3

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Handle: RePEc:spr:jknowl:v:12:y:2021:i:4:d:10.1007_s13132-020-00689-3