Working Paper 11/258 - abstract

Long-term effects of a nutritional shock: the 1980 famine of Karamoja, Uganda (PDF, 776kB)

Marcela UmanaAponte

This paper uses the 1980 famine in Karamoja, Uganda, as a natural experiment to evaluate its possible longā€lasting cognitive and health effects. Results indicate a strong negative impact on the educational attainment of adults exposed to the famine in utero or infancy. They were less likely to be literate and completed less years of education. These negative effects increase (become more negative) when controlling for family-level unobservables. The study exploits the Ugandan 1991 and 2002 censuses provided by the Integrated Public Use Microdata Series - International (IPUMS-I) and conducted by the Uganda Bureau of Statistics. These two unique datasets allow to link the place and date of birth of individuals with the timing and regional variation of the famine.