Monday, September 15, 2014

18 September 2014: Revealed Preference for Open Defecation: Evidence from a New Survey in Rural North India

Dean Spears
Rice Institute and Centre for Development Economics

Abstract:
Despite economic growth, government latrine construction, and increasing recognition among policy-makers that it constitutes a health and human capital crisis, open defecation remains stubbornly widespread in rural India. Indeed, 67% of rural Indian households in the 2011 census reported defecating in the open. We present evidence from new survey data collected in villages in five states in India: Bihar, Haryana, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, and Uttar Pradesh. We find that rural households do not build inexpensive latrines of the sort that commonly reduce open defecation and save lives in Bangladesh, Southeast Asia, and sub-Saharan Africa. Many survey respondents‘ behaviour reveals a preference for open defecation: over 40% of households with a working latrine have at least one member who defecates in the open. In the sample from the four largest states, more than half of people in households which own a government latrine defecate in the open. We apply a demographic model of latrine use which predicts that if the government were to build a latrine for every rural household that lacks one, without changing sanitation preferences, most people in our sample in these states would nevertheless defecate in the open. Further evidence supports a preference for open defecation: many survey respondents report that open defecation is more pleasurable and desirable than latrine use. Among people who defecate in the open, a majority report that widespread open defecation would be at least as good for child health as latrine use by everyone in the village. These findings suggest that intensifying existing policies of latrine construction will not be enough to substantially reduce open defecation. Policy-makers in India must lead a large scale campaign to promote latrine use.

Date: September 18, 2014
Time: 03:00 P.M.

Venue:
Seminar Room (First Floor)
Department of Economics,
Delhi School of Economics,
New Delhi-110007(INDIA)

Location:

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Thursday, September 4, 2014

4 September 2014: Monks, Gents and Industrialists: The Long Run Impact of the Dissolution of the English Monasteries

Sebastian Vollmer
University of Goettingen

Abstract:
In this paper we undertake an investigation of the long-run economic impact of the dissolution of the English monasteries by Henry VIII in the 1530s. This event is plausibly linked to the ”rise of the gentry”, the commercialization of agriculture and political and economic change in early modern England potentially facilitating its precocious industrialization. To measure the dissolution we digitized the Valor Ecclesiasticus, the census Henry commissioned of monastic incomes in 1534 and use monastic income at the parish level from the Valor as a measure of the local impact of the dissolution. We show that parishes which the dissolution impacted more were more likely to have a textile mill in 1838, tended to have more mills and greater mill employment. We also show that they tended to have a lower proportion of their labor force in agriculture in 1831 and a higher proportion in retail trade. In addition we demonstrate that parishes where the dissolution had a greater impact had more gentry in 1700, were more likely to have land enclosed by parliament and had more innovative agriculture as measured by patents. We show these results are robust to controlling for many other potential determinants of the location and extent of industry and for a variety of strategies for accounting for unobservables. The results are consistent with Tawney’s famous thesis of the ”rise of the gentry” but extend it by making the link between social change and the industrial revolution.

Date: September 4, 2014
Time: 03:00 P.M.

Venue:
Seminar Room (First Floor)
Department of Economics,
Delhi School of Economics,
New Delhi-110007(INDIA)

Location:

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Monday, September 1, 2014

5th September 2014: Fertility Limits on Local Politicians in India

Abhishek Chakravarty
University of Essex

Abstract:
We examine the demographic implications of fertility limits on local politicians. Several Indian states disbar individuals with more than two children from contesting Panchayat and municipal elections. These two-child limits are intended to decrease fertility among the constituents through a role-model effect and by incentivizing individuals who intend to run for elections in the future to plan smaller families. We find that fertility limits on elected representatives decrease voters fertility. However, they also increase the sex ratio at birth, especially in states and for socioeconomic groups with a stronger preference for sons. We show that households are willing to give up higher order births to remain eligible for political office, but only if they have the desired number of sons. Our results point towards a novel source of demographic influence: political leaders.

Date: September 5, 2014
Time: 11:30 A.M.

Venue:
Seminar Room 2
Indian Statistical Institute Delhi Centre,
7, S. J. S. Sansanwal Marg,
New Delhi-110016 (INDIA)

Location:

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Wednesday, August 13, 2014

14 August 2014: Misallocation, Internal Trade, and the Role of Transportation Infrastructure

Jose Asturias
Georgetown University

Abstract:
In this paper, we quantify the welfare impact of the construction of the Golden Quadrilateral (GQ) in India. To do so, we extend the endogenous variable markups trade model of Atkeson and Burstein (2008) into a multi-region setting in which asymmetric states trade with each other. To estimate key parameters of the model, we use a rich micro-level dataset constructed from manufacturing and geospatial data. We then simulate the improvement in road quality consistent with the construction of the GQ. We find aggregate gains of 2.15% for all of India. We also decompose these gains into Ricardian and pro-competitive components. Lastly, we find that welfare effects vary substantially across states, including negative welfare impacts for some states far away from the GQ.

Date: August 14, 2014
Time: 03:00 P.M.

Venue:
Seminar Room (First Floor)
Department of Economics,
Delhi School of Economics,
New Delhi-110007(INDIA)

Location:

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Wednesday, August 6, 2014

8th August 2014: Misallocation, Internal Trade, and the Role of Transportation Infrastructure

Jose Asturias
School of Foreign Service in Qatar, Georgetown University

Abstract:
In this paper, we quantify the welfare impact of the construction of the Golden Quadrilateral (GQ) in India. To do so, we extend the endogenous variable markups trade model of Atkeson and Burstein (2008) into a multi-region setting in which asymmetric states trade with each other. To estimate key parameters of the model, we use a rich micro-level dataset constructed from manufacturing and geospatial data. We then simulate the improvement in road quality consistent with the construction of the GQ. We find aggregate gains of 2.15% for all of India. We also decompose these gains into Ricardian and pro-competitive components. Lastly, we find that welfare effects vary substantially across states, including negative welfare impacts for some states far away from the GQ.

Date: August 8, 2014
Time: 11:30 A.M.

Venue:
Seminar Room 2
Indian Statistical Institute Delhi Centre,
7, S. J. S. Sansanwal Marg,
New Delhi-110016 (INDIA)

Location:

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Wednesday, July 30, 2014

7 August 2014: The Effect of Quantitative Easing on Financial Flows to Developing Countries

Sanket Mohapatra
The World Bank

Abstract:
Following the 2008 global financial crisis, central banks in high-income countries led by the U.S Fed embarked on unprecedented monetary policy easing. These quantitative easing (QE) policies more than quadrupled the U.S Fed’s balance sheet within a short span of five years. Sanket will discuss the implications of QE for financial flows to developing countries, finding evidence for potential transmission along observable liquidity, portfolio balancing, and confidence channels—as well as additional effects over and above these observable channels. He will also discuss the different impact of QE on different types of flows: portfolio (especially bond) flows tended to be significantly more sensitive than foreign direct investment. Mohapatra will also present simulations to explore the potential effects of QE withdrawal on financial flows to developing countries.

Date: August 7, 2014
Time: 03:30 P.M.

Venue:
NCAER Conference Room
National Council of Applied Economic Research
Parisila Bhawan, 11, Indraprastha Estate
New Delhi-110002(INDIA)

Location:

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Note:
Please join us for tea and hot snacks after the seminar. For queries, please contact Ms Sudesh Bala at sbala@ncaer.org or on 011-2345-2669.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

28 July 2014: Short-term Migration and Rural Workfare Programs: Evidence from India

Clement Imbert
Oxford University

Abstract:
We study the effect of a large rural workfare program on short-term migration from rural to urban areas of India. Using cross-state variation in public employment provision for identification, we find that participation to the program significantly reduces short-term migration. We next use survey data from a high out migration area to estimate a structural model of migration decisions which suggests that the costs of migration may be as high as 60% of daily earnings outside of the village. Finally, we use nationally representative data to estimate the impact of the program on urban labor markets and find that wages increase in urban centers which rely on migration from rural districts where more public employment is provided.

Date: July 28, 2014
Time: 03:00 P.M.

Venue:
Seminar Room (First Floor)
Department of Economics,
Delhi School of Economics,
New Delhi-110007(INDIA)

Location:

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