Follow us
Publications Commentary Research People Events News Resources and Videos About IFS
Home Publications Complementarities in the Production of Child Health

Complementarities in the Production of Child Health

IFS Working Paper W19/15

This paper estimates flexible child health production functions to investigate whether better water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) practices make nutrition intake more productive for children aged 6-24 months. Using cohort data, with detailed information on nutrition intake and WASH investments, and a control function approach to account for endogeneity of inputs, we show that better WASH increases the productivity of protein and calories in the formation of child health using as proxies child height and weight. We also uncover heterogeneity in the productivity of these inputs by child gender: nutritional intake is found to be more productive for boys, and WASH investments more productive for girls. Further analysis indicates that this is not driven by differential parental invest-ments by child gender. Although the study sample are children born in the early 1980s they faced similar nutritional and WASH conditions as those faced by children currently living in poor households in low-income settings.

More on this topic

IFS Working Paper W20/13
This paper uses linked survey responses and administrative hospital records to examine the accuracy of self-reported medical diagnoses.
IFS Working Paper WP20/12
Whether population health improves or worsens with changes in macroeconomic conditions is a long-standing question. Despite a substantial literature there is no clear consensus on the answer. Some studies find evidence that recessions are good for population health (i.e. poor health is ...