Aid, Public Spending and Human Welfare: Evidence from Quantile Regressions
CREDIT Research Paper No. 03/13
29 Pages Posted: 26 Nov 2003
Date Written: August 2003
Does aid contribute to human development other than by increasing growth? In doing so, is aid more or less effective in poorer countries (those with low levels of aggregate welfare)? This paper addresses these issues, assessing if there is cross-country aggregate evidence for an effect of aid on welfare levels. We posit that aid can enhance human development by financing public expenditures that increase welfare indicators. Using quantile regressions, we report evidence that aid is associated with higher human development (the Human Development Index) and lower infant mortality (both indicators of aggregate welfare). Where there are differences across quantiles, aid is more effective in countries below the median of the welfare distribution, i.e. with lower levels of human development. Insofar as aggregate welfare is (inversely) correlated with poverty, we find evidence that aid can make a positive contribution to alleviating poverty, and that the effect appears to be greater in countries with lower levels of human development indicators.
Keywords: Aid Effectiveness, Human Welfare (HDI and infant mortality), Quantile Regressions
JEL Classification: O10, F35, I30
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation