Neighborhood Sanitation and Infant Mortality
In this paper, we shed new light on a long-standing puzzle: In India, Muslim children are substantially more likely than Hindu children to survive to their first birthday, even though Indian Muslims have lower wealth, consumption, educational attainment, and access to state services. Contrary to the prior literature, we show that the observed mortality advantage accrues not to Muslim households themselves but rather to their neighbors, who are also likely to be Muslim. Investigating mechanisms, we provide a collage of evidence suggesting externalities due to poor sanitation are a channel linking the religious composition of neighborhoods to infant mortality.
Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w21184
Published: Michael Geruso & Dean Spears, 2018. "Neighborhood Sanitation and Infant Mortality," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, vol 10(2), pages 125-162.
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