Do Girls Pay the Price of Civil War: Violence and Infant Mortality in Congo

44 Pages Posted: 14 Nov 2014

See all articles by Olivier Dagnelie

Olivier Dagnelie

Spanish Council for Scientific Research (CSIC) - Insitute for Economic Analysis

Giacomo De Luca

Free University of Bozen-Bolzano - Free University of Bozen-Bolzano, Faculty of Economics and Management, Students

Jean Francois Maystadt

International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI)

Date Written: October 8, 2014

Abstract

Civil wars inflict considerable development costs. Understanding the relative fragility of certain segments of the population is a necessary condition to build resilience to ongoing and future violence outbreaks. This paper documents the impact of the violent civil war affecting the Democratic Republic of Congo in the period 1997–2004 on infant mortality. It adopts an instrumental variable approach to correct for the nonrandom timing and location of conflict events using mineral price index variations by district, taking account of the mineral locations and prices, as instrument. Strong and robust evidence, including mother fixed effects regressions comparing siblings, shows that conflict significantly increases girl mortality. The paper also examines the mechanisms explaining this phenomenon, with a focus on disentangling the behavioral from the biological factors. The analysis suggests that gender imbalances in infant mortality are driven by the selection induced by a higher vulnerability of boys in utero rather than by gender discrimination.

Keywords: Democratic Republic of the Congo, Central Africa, Africa south of Sahara, Africa, Gender, Children, Infant Mortality Rate, Conflict, Civil War

Suggested Citation

Dagnelie, Olivier and De Luca, Giacomo and Maystadt, Jean Francois, Do Girls Pay the Price of Civil War: Violence and Infant Mortality in Congo (October 8, 2014). IFPRI Discussion Paper 1374, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2507341

Olivier Dagnelie (Contact Author)

Spanish Council for Scientific Research (CSIC) - Insitute for Economic Analysis ( email )

Campus de la UAB
Bellaterra, Barcelona 08193
Spain

Giacomo De Luca

Free University of Bozen-Bolzano - Free University of Bozen-Bolzano, Faculty of Economics and Management, Students ( email )

Via Sernesi 1
Bozen-Bolzano (BZ), 39100
Italy

Jean Francois Maystadt

International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) ( email )

1201 Eye St, NW,
Washington, DC 20005
United States

Do you have a job opening that you would like to promote on SSRN?

Paper statistics

Downloads
26
Abstract Views
522
PlumX Metrics