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Spillovers of Community-Based Health Interventions on Consumption Smoothing

Malde, Bansi, Vera-Hernandez, Marcos (2022) Spillovers of Community-Based Health Interventions on Consumption Smoothing. Economic Development and Cultural Change, 70 (4). ISSN 0013-0079. E-ISSN 1539-2988. (doi:10.1086/714007) (KAR id:85795)


Community-based group interventions are a cost-effective way of delivering programs in low-income settings. Design features may influence behaviors beyond those targeted by the intervention. This paper studies spillover effects of a participatory community health intervention in rural Malawi, implemented through a cluster randomized control trial, on an untargeted outcome: consumption smoothing after crop losses. While crop losses reduce consumption growth in the absence of the intervention, households in treated areas compensate for this loss and perfectly insure their consumption. We rule out better self-insurance and labour supply adjustments as drivers, indicating that informal risk sharing must have improved. Suggestive evidence shows that health improvements cannot explain the whole effect and instead social interactions, which may have alleviated contracting frictions had a role to play.

Item Type: Article
DOI/Identification number: 10.1086/714007
Additional information: For the purpose of open access, the author has applied a CC BY public copyright licence to any Author Accepted Manuscript version arising from this submission.
Uncontrolled keywords: participatory community interventions, spillovers, consumption smoothing, Sub-Saharan Africa
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HB Economic Theory
Divisions: Divisions > Division of Human and Social Sciences > School of Economics
Funders: Economic and Social Research Council (
Depositing User: Bansi Malde
Date Deposited: 01 Feb 2021 15:40 UTC
Last Modified: 04 Mar 2024 15:46 UTC
Resource URI: (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)

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