Bookmark
Print
Facebook
Twitter
GDN FUNDED PAPERS
Internal and external reforms in agricultural policy in Tunisia and poverty in rural area
Project : Awards and Medals Competition (AMC)
Author : Mohamed Abdelbasset Chemingui and Chokri Thabet
Date : 2001
Description : Using a calibrated general equilibrium model of the Tunisian economy, with 10 types of households (9 rural and one urban) identified by professional occupation and sources of income, this paper assesses the impacts of internal and external reforms in the agriculture policy in Tunisia on household incomes and income distribution in the rural area. Our general conclusion is that trade reform and subsidies reduction will most likely decrease the average welfare of the most rural household categories mostly the poor. Only an increase in agriculture yield will improve income and then reduce poverty in rural area.
Are Income-Calorie Elasticity's Really High in Developing Countries?: Some Implications for Nutrition and Income
Project : Awards and Medals Competition (AMC)
Author : Arjunan Subramanian
Date : 2001
Description : In the last two decades there has been an intense debate on the response of nutrition intake to rising incomes. On the one hand, some studies show that the income elasticity of calorie intake is quite low, and not significantly different from zero in statistical terms. Critics on the other hand show that the elasticity is in the range of 0.3-0.5 and in any case statistically different from zero. This increase in the consumption of calories comes largely from the increase in the consumption of cereals as incomes rise. In this paper, we relook at the evidence from India to study this important relationship. Our estimates of the expenditure/income elasticity of cereals are low showing declining consumption of cereals as incomes rise. This shows that income-calorie elasticity cannot be as high as in the literature, given the fact that cereals are the cheapest and the highest source of calories. Eventually the under-consumption of calories (malnutrition) among the poorest households is unlikely to disappear in the normal course of economic development.
From land distribution to integrated development: The evolution and impact of shelter and poverty alleviation strategies in marginalized settlements in Nouakchott, Mauritania
Project : Awards and Medals Competition (AMC)
Author : Sameh Wahba
Date : 2001
Description : This paper examines two strategies implemented in marginalized settlements at the urban fringe and compare their effectiveness in terms of enhancing participants’ income and improving their shelter conditions. The first is a minimalist land distribution strategy in which squatters are granted titles to land parcels in the new sites to which they were relocated. The underlying assumption is that once the poor have been provided with secure property titles, they would incrementally consolidate their houses using their own resources and gradually work their way out of poverty. The second approach, typically labeled ‘Integrated Development’, functions on the premise that secure landownership is often not enough per se to alleviate income and housing poverty, especially in remote marginalized settlements. The idea therefore is to directly catalyze shelter improvements and promote participants’ social and economic development by providing a comprehensive assistance package that includes housing finance, infrastructure improvements, revenue-enhancing schemes, and capacity building initiatives.
Urban poverty and water management in Mexico
Project : Awards and Medals Competition (AMC)
Author : Patricia Avila Garcia
Date : 2001
Description : This research seeks to analyze the social tensions and disputes that have arise in cities in Mexico as a consequence of the “urbanization of poverty”. More specifically, this paper deals with conflicts over water in poor areas or squatter settlements of cities that occurred because water constitutes an increasingly scarce and strategic resource in cities (Anton, 1996).
How well do antenatal clinic (ANC) attendees represent the general population?
Project : Awards and Medals Competition (AMC)
Author : Vonthanak Saphonn, Sun Penh Ly, Leng Bun Hor and Samrith Chhuon
Date : 2001
Description : The purpose of this study was to evaluate whether HIV-1 prevalence rates among antenatal clinic (ANC) attendees in Cambodia provided a reasonable estimate of HIV-1 prevalence among all women 15-49 years. Methods: ANC attendees in five HIV sentinel surveillance sites (five provinces) were selected by consecutive sampling (n = 1695). The population survey of females by household was carried out in the same five areas. Household females aged 15-49 years were selected using a three-stage cluster sampling design (n=3066). Serum-based HIV ELISA testing was done for both ANC attendees and household females. HIV prevalence for ANC attendees and household females were compared by age group and urban vs rural location. Results: The overall prevalence of HIV-1 infection among ANC attendees (1.62%, 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.26-1.98) was similar to the overall prevalence obtained from the general population of household females (1.24%, 95% CI, 0.92-1.55) in the same catchment areas in Cambodia. In the rural areas, the age-adjusted overall HIV prevalence among ANC attendees (2.23%, 95% CI, 1.64-2.83) was significantly higher than among the household females (0.88%, 95% CI, 0.51-1.27). In the 15-24 age group in rural areas, the HIV prevalence of ANC women was 2.71% (95% CI, 0.96-4.46) compared with 0.77% (95% CI, 0.02-1.53) in household females.
The impact of citizens’ response to weak governance: the case of citizens’ suits and actions of civil disobedience to protect environment in India
Project : Awards and Medals Competition (AMC)
Author : V. Santhakumar
Date : 2001
Description : Weak governance forces citizens to act in many ways including the filing of public suits and the organization of actions of civil disobedience. It is interesting to know whether these actions will reduce the social losses due to weak governance. This paper makes an attempt to answer this question in the case of citizens’ actions that arise due to the weak enforcement of environmental regulations by the State. The enforcement of environmental regulation is weak in developing countries like India, and thus the citizens are being compelled to sue the polluters or take direct actions that are costly to the polluter. The theoretical and empirical analysis, based on 23 cases of citizens’ action from the Kerala State of India, show that their impact is influenced by the institutional deficiencies of the country. Such deficiencies include the delay in resolving conflicts through court interventions, the lower cost of taking actions of civil disobedience, and the unreliability of monetary compensation. The analysis lead to the conclusion that citizens’ action may not be very effective in controlling the pollution from existing factories, and may be effective in blocking the establishment of new factories. Both these outcomes, i.e., the continued pollution in existing factories, and zero-pollution (or non-establishment) of new factories/projects, cause social losses.
Governing a democracy: Constrained discretion for development
Project : Awards and Medals Competition (AMC)
Author : Ashima Goyal
Date : 2001
Description : The strength of democracy is the free debate, which can reveal information, and bring out different points of view. Its weakness is the stasis that comes from the conflict in these points of view. Constitutions and second order rules and procedures build in checks and balances that prevent any one interest from dominating, but unless cleverly designed they can slow down actions that benefit all the constituents. The larger constitutions are normally firmly in place, but reforms give an opportunity to rethink many second-order rules and procedures. Rules are often framed to bind others, to minimize free riding, and abuse of power rather than to improve outcomes for everybody. In re-structuring them four principles should be followed. First, use the strengths of a democracy. Second, mitigate the weaknesses. Third, substitute incentives for discretionary controls. Finally, and more context specific, understand and use its structure and history. In a developing democracy the poor are the largest vote block, and future generations are not present to voice their interests. Those living from day to day have poor forward-looking abilities. We explore the re-structuring of some rules, for such a democracy, that would respect the principles suggested. In general the shift is towards constrained discretion. The constraint forces a long-term perspective and transparent discretion allows democratic debate to give valuable inputs, but retains the possibility of taking a decision that maximizes aggregate welfare. Major improvements in ICT technology make transparency and productive debate more feasible.
Sources of ethnic inequality in Vietnam
Project : Awards and Medals Competition (AMC)
Author : Dileni Gunewardena and Dominique van de Walle
Date : 2000
Description : To redress ethnic inequality in Vietnam, it is not enough to target poor areas. Policies must be designed to reach minority households in poor areas, to open up options by ensuring that minority groups are not disadvantaged (In labor markets, for example), to change the conditions that have caused their isolation and social exclusion, and to explicitly recognize behavior patterns (including compensating behavtorj that have served the minorities well but intensify ethnic inequalities in the longer term.
Building social capital: Collective action, adoption of agricultural innovations, and poverty reduction in the Indian semi-arid tropics
Project : Awards and Medals Competition (AMC)
Author : Devanathan Parathasarathy and Viswanath K. Chopde
Date : 2000
Description : The central argument of this paper is that social capital, defined as the ability to develop and use various kinds of social networks – and the resources that become available thereof – are central in understanding how farm households, and the farming community in general, adopt and benefit from improved agricultural technologies. Earlier studies have shown the importance of collective action for the successful uptake of technologies for which cooperation is a prerequisite – such as watershed and irrigation management, integrated pest and disease management etc. However the importance of collective action, the use of social capital in information flows regarding new technology options and adoption procedures, and the actual ways in which communities enhance their collective welfare as a consequence of individual farm level growth, is something about which little is known.
Should I stay or can I go?: Worker attachment in Russia
Project : Awards and Medals Competition (AMC)
Author : Sergei M. Guriev and Guido Friebel
Date : 2000
Description : Reallocation of workers from obsolete sectors to more pro…table ones is among the most important challenges for many former centrally planned economies on their road towards a market economy. Due to the Stalinist mode of industrialization, this problem has an important regional dimension: geographical mobility is required to reallocate labor from regions dominated by industries in decline to more prosperous areas. In Russia, however, labour market segmentation does not appear to decline. In this paper we argue that the very existence of inherited monopsonistic or oligopsonistic local labour market structure can obstruct workers’ ability to migrate. We analyze a model in which …rms have an incentive to ‘attach’ their workers, that is to restrict their ability to migrate decreasing workers’ outside option and increasing rents. While the rationale for attachment is straightforward, the key to the feasibility of attachment lies in the existence of cash constraints. We argue that the widespread use of in-kind wages and wage arrears in Russia may be explained as an attachment strategy of …rms: paying wages in non-monetary forms makes it hard for workers to raise the cash needed for quitting the region. There are two main results of the model. First, attachment can only exist, if there are not too many …rms on the local labour market. Second, attachment involves a risk of worker exploitation, i.e., the attached workers are not compensated for their forgone option to migrate. Data of the Russian Longitudinal Monitoring Survey (RLMS) support our theory. Controlling for personal and regional characteristics, workers’ propensity to leave a region decreases with the degree of concentration of the local labor market.
 
Narrow Your Search