Study: “Does Trade Reduce Infant Mortality Rates? Evidence From Sub-Saharan Africa”
PI: Panda, Pallavi
Affiliation: University of California, Riverside
Funding Partner: IIE
Data Source(s): DHS
Method(s): difference-in-difference; mother fixed effects; birth year fixed effects
Geographic Location(s): Sub-Saharan Africa
Description: Trade has been posited as a key factor in economic development, and economists have argued that trade leads to higher income growth rates. Many developing countries have adopted increasingly open trade policies with the objective of spurring growth, though there is little evidence of the effect of trade on child health. Using Demographic and Health Surveys from 30 sub-Saharan African countries, this research examines the impact of trade liberalization on opportunities for women, and subsequently on the decrease of infant mortality. Examining the average difference in probability of death of children born to the same mother before and after the African Growth Opportunity Act (AGOA) in both AGOA affected and non-AGOA affected countries, the study finds infant mortality falls by about 0.7 to 1.3 percentage points and that educated women and rural women experience significant decreases in infant death after AGOA. However, both poor and nonpoor experience a decline of similar magnitude, implying that trade does not reinforce inequality in health outcomes.
Panda, Pallavi. (2014). Does Trade reduce Infant Mortality? Evidence from Sub-Saharan Africa (Doctoral Dissertation). University of California, Riverside, CA.