Marriage Market Responses in the Wake of a Natural Disaster in India
33 Pages Posted: 5 Nov 2018 Last revised: 7 May 2019
Date Written: July 31, 2018
With increasing occurrences of natural disasters globally, there is a need to study their demographic effects both in the short- and long-run. In the backdrop of the 2001 Gujarat earthquake that resulted in over 20,000 casualties and large-scale loss of property, this paper analyzes marriage market responses in the event of a natural disaster. Using the 2004-05 round of the India Human Development Survey and employing a difference-in-differences strategy, we find a statistically significant reduction in women's marriage age, a lower probability of marital matches within the same villages, a decrease in spousal educational difference and probability of marrying a husband with more education, and an increased likelihood of women marrying into poorer households. Additionally, we discuss how our results could be affected by several channels and provide empirical evidence on changes in dowry payments as a potential mechanism.
Keywords: Marriage; India; Gujarat Earthquake
JEL Classification: J12; J16; O53
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation