Search

You searched for: Content Type Working Paper Remove constraint Content Type: Working Paper Publishing Institution The John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University Remove constraint Publishing Institution: The John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University Political Geography India Remove constraint Political Geography: India Publication Year within 10 Years Remove constraint Publication Year: within 10 Years Topic Health Remove constraint Topic: Health
Number of results to display per page

Search Results

  • Author: Seema Jayachandran, Rohini Pande
  • Publication Date: 04-2015
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University
  • Abstract: India's child stunting rate is among the highest in the world, exceeding that of many poorer African countries. In this paper, we analyze data for over 174,000 Indian and Sub-Saharan African children to show that Indian firstborns are taller than African firstborns; the Indian height disadvantage emerges with the second child and then increases with birth order. This pattern persists when we compare height between siblings, and also holds for health inputs such as vaccinations. Three patterns in the data indicate that India's culture of eldest son preference plays a key role in explaining the steeper birth order gradient among Indian children and, consequently, the overall height deficit. First, the Indian firstborn height advantage only exists for sons. Second, an Indian son with an older sibling is taller than his African counterpart if and only if he is the eldest son. Third, the India-Africa height deficit is largest for daughters with no older brothers, which reflects that fact that their families are those most likely to exceed their desired fertility in order to have a son.
  • Topic: Health, Poverty, Children, International Development
  • Political Geography: Africa, South Asia, India