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Under the Weather: Health, Schooling, and Economic Consequences of Early-Life Rainfall

Publication Abstract

Maccini, Sharon, and Dean Yang. 2009. "Under the Weather: Health, Schooling, and Economic Consequences of Early-Life Rainfall." American Economic Review, 99(3): 1006-26.

We examine the effect of early-life rainfall on the health, education, and socioeconomic outcomes of Indonesian adults. We link historical rainfall for each individual's birth year and birth location with adult outcomes from the 2000 Indonesia Family Life Survey (IFLS). Higher early-life rainfall has large positive effects on the adult outcomes of women, but not of men. Women with 20 percent higher rainfall (relative to the local norm) are 0.57 centimeters taller, complete 0.22 more schooling grades, and live in households scoring 0.12 standard deviations higher on an asset index. Schooling attainment appears to mediate the impact on adult women's socioeconomic status.

DOI:10.1257/aer.99.3.1006 (Full Text)

Country of focus: Indonesia.

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