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Socioeconomic Determinants and Spatial Convergence of Biological Well-being: The Case of Physical Stature in Colombia, 1920-1990

Adolfo Meisel-Roca (), Maria Ramirez-Giraldo () and Daniela Santos-Cárdenas ()
Authors registered in the RePEc Author Service: Adolfo Meisel Roca

Borradores de Economia from Banco de la Republica de Colombia

Abstract: This paper explores the relationship between the physical stature of Colombians born during the 20th century and several socioeconomic variables. Using a dataset of more than 225,000 individuals built from judicial background certificates, we find an important increase in the stature of the population: the average height of women increased 4.1 centimeters and that of men increased 5.7 centimeters. Econometric results suggest important differences in the individual’s stature according to gender, level of education, occupation, and place and date of birth. Similarly, the disease environment and access to public services significantly affect people’s height. We find that departmental average height disparities decreased and the gap across regions closed throughout the century. **** RESUMEN: Este artículo investiga la relación entre la estatura de los colombianos nacidos en el siglo XX y algunas variables socioeconómicas. Usando una base de datos de más de 225,000 individuos construida a partir de certificados de antecedentes judiciales, encontramos un aumento importante en la estatura de la población: la estatura promedio de las mujeres aumentó 4,1 centímetros y la de hombres aumentó 5,7 centímetros. Los resultados econométricos sugieren diferencias importantes en la estatura según género, nivel educativo, ocupación, salud, acceso a los servicios públicos y lugar y fecha de nacimiento. Encontramos que las disparidades en la estatura promedio entre departamentos se redujeron y la brecha entre las regiones se cerró a lo largo del siglo.

Keywords: Anthropometrics; Height; Biological well-being; socio-economic determinants; convergence; Colombia; Antropometría; Estatura; Bienestar; Calidad de vida; Convergencia. (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: I10 I14 I15 N36 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-his
Date: 2018-09
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