NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

NBER Working Papers by Robert Tortora

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Working Papers

January 2009Life (evaluation), HIV/AIDS, and Death in Africa
with Angus Deaton, Jane Fortson: w14637
We use data from the Gallup World Poll and from the Demographic and Health Surveys to investigate how subjective wellbeing (SWB) is affected by mortality in sub-Saharan Africa, including mortality from HIV/AIDS. The Gallup data provide direct evidence on Africans' own emotional and evaluative responses to high levels of infection and of mortality. By comparing the effect of mortality on SWB with the effect of income on SWB, we can attach monetary values to mortality to illuminate the often controversial question of how to value life in Africa. Large fractions of the respondents in the World Poll report the mortality of an immediate family member in the last twelve months, with malaria typically more important than AIDS, and deaths of women in childbirth more important than deaths from AIDS...

Published: A. Deaton, J. Fortson and R. Tortora Life (evaluation), HIV/AIDS, and death in Africa Chapter 5 in E. Diener, J. Helliwell, and D. Kahneman (eds.), International Differences in Well-Being, pp. 105-136, Oxford: Oxford University Press (2010)

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