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Nutritional and Schooling Impact of a Cash Transfer Program in Ethiopia: A Retrospective Analysis of Childhood Experience

Mariapia Mendola () and Mengesha Yayo Negasi ()
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Mengesha Yayo Negasi: Università di Milano Bicocca, IZA and Centro Studi Luca d'Agliano

No 451, Development Working Papers from Centro Studi Luca d'Agliano, University of Milano

Abstract: The rate of malnutrition among under-five children in Ethiopia is among the highest in Sub-Saharan Africa and in the world. Since 2005, the Government of Ethiopia has been implementing a nation-wide social protection program, with the aim to improve nutrition and food security, decrease poverty and enhance human capital accumulation. This paper investigates the direct impact of this program on long-term anthropometric measures of nutritional status and the indirect effects on enrollment delay and educational attainment. Our research design uses unique administrative data on the regional coverage of the program and combines differences in program intensity across regions with differences across cohorts induced by the timing of the program. Findings show that early childhood exposure to the program leads to better nutritional status and hence higher human capital accumulation. Results are robust to different measures of program intensity, estimation samples, empirical models and some placebo tests.

Keywords: Cash Transfers; Social Protection; Nutrition; Primary Education; Ethiopia (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: J15 D85 C45 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-dev
Date: 2019-06-19, Revised 2019-06-19
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