Public Service Provision, User Fees and Political Turmoil

Posted: 22 Jun 2008

See all articles by Marcel Fafchamps

Marcel Fafchamps

Stanford University - Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies

Bart Minten

Cornell University - Food and Nutrition Policy Program; Catholic University of Leuven (KUL) - Department of Agro-Engineering and Economics

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper

Date Written: June 2007

Abstract

This study looks at public service delivery in rural areas of Madagascar. The blockade of the central highlands of Madagascar by a defeated president let us examine the short-term effect of a large unanticipated macro shock and subsequent elimination of user fees on the rural delivery of health and education services. We found enrolment in rural primary schools surprisingly resilient to the crisis, probably because it unfolded in the middle of the school year. In contrast, the blockade led to a large drop in health care services, measured by the number of patient visits to health care centres. Part of this effect can be explained by an increase in monetary poverty. After the blockade, user fees were suspended in schools and health centres but the measure was not applied immediately in all rural communes. Controlling for supply effects, time dummies and school and health centre fixed effects, we find that the suspension of user fees is associated with a significant increase in both school enrolment and visits to health centres.

Keywords: O12, I18, I28

Suggested Citation

Fafchamps, Marcel and Minten, Bart, Public Service Provision, User Fees and Political Turmoil (June 2007). Journal of African Economies, Vol. 16, Issue 3, pp. 485-518, 2007, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1149699 or http://dx.doi.org/ejl040

Marcel Fafchamps (Contact Author)

Stanford University - Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies ( email )

Stanford, CA 94305
United States

Bart Minten

Cornell University - Food and Nutrition Policy Program ( email )

BP 6313
Antananarivo 101
Madagascar
033 11 38520 (Phone)
261 20 2222198 (Fax)

Catholic University of Leuven (KUL) - Department of Agro-Engineering and Economics ( email )

Kardinaal Mercierlaan 92
Heverlee, B-3001
Belgium

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