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The Gorbachev Anti-Alcohol Campaign and Russia's Mortality Crisis

Jay Bhattacharya, Christina Gathmann () and Grant Miller

No 18589, NBER Working Papers from National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc

Abstract: Political and economic transition is often blamed for Russia's 40% surge in deaths between 1990 and 1994. Highlighting that increases in mortality occurred primarily among alcohol-related causes and among working-age men (the heaviest drinkers), this paper investigates an alternative explanation: the demise of the 1985-1988 Gorbachev Anti-Alcohol Campaign. Using archival sources to build a new oblast-year data set spanning 1978-2000, we find a variety of evidence suggesting that the campaign's end explains a large share of the mortality crisis - implying that Russia's transition to capitalism and democracy was not as lethal as commonly suggested.

JEL-codes: I12 I18 N34 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2012-12
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-cis, nep-cwa, nep-dem, nep-hea, nep-his and nep-tra
Note: AG DEV HC HE
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Published as Christina Gathmann & Marijke Welisch, 2012. "The Gorbachev Anti-Alcohol Campaign and Russiaâs Mortality Crisis," CESifo DICE Report, Ifo Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, vol. 10(4), pages 62-68, December.
Published as Jay Bhattacharya & Christina Gathmann & Grant Miller, 2013. "The Gorbachev Anti-alcohol Campaign and Russia's Mortality Crisis," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 5(2), pages 232-60, April.

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Journal Article: The Gorbachev Anti-alcohol Campaign and Russia's Mortality Crisis (2013) Downloads
Journal Article: The Gorbachev Anti-Alcohol Campaign and Russia’s Mortality Crisis (2012) Downloads
Working Paper: The Gorbachev Anti-Alcohol Campaign and Russia's Mortality Crisis (2012) Downloads
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