Department of Economics
Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile
Santiago de Chile
Institutional Affiliation: Pontificia Universidad Catolica de Chile
Information about this author at RePEc
NBER Working Papers and Publications
|March 2020||The Virus of Fear: The Political Impact of Ebola in the U.S.|
with Filipe R. Campante, Ruben Durante: w26897
We study how fear can affect the behavior of voters and politicians by looking at the Ebola scare that hit the U.S. a month before the 2014 midterm elections. Exploiting the timing and location of the four cases diagnosed in the U.S., we show that heightened concern about Ebola, as measured by online activity, led to a lower vote share for the Democrats in congressional and gubernatorial elections, as well as lower turnout, despite no evidence of a general anti-incumbent effect (including on President Obama's approval ratings). We then show that politicians responded to the Ebola scare by mentioning the disease in connection with immigration and terrorism in newsletters and campaign ads. This response came only from Republicans, especially those facing competitive races, suggesting a strat...
|May 2018||Building Nations Through Shared Experiences: Evidence from African Football|
with Ruben Durante, Filipe R. Campante: w24666
We examine whether shared collective experiences can help build a national identity, by looking at the impact of national football teams’ victories in sub- Saharan Africa. Combining individual survey data with information on official matches played between 2000 and 2015, we find that individuals interviewed in the days after a victory of their country’s national team are less likely to identify with their ethnic group than with the country as a whole and more likely to trust people of other ethnicities than those interviewed just before. The effect is sizable and robust and is not explained by generic euphoria or optimism. Crucially, we find that national victories not only affect attitudes but also reduce violence: using plausibly exogenous variation from close qualifications to the Afric...
|October 2013||Malaria and Early African Development: Evidence from the Sickle Cell Trait|
with David N. Weil: w19603
We examine the effect of malaria on economic development in Africa over the very long run. Using data on the prevalence of the mutation that causes sickle cell disease we measure the impact of malaria on mortality in Africa prior to the period in which formal data were collected. Our estimate is that in the more afflicted regions, malaria lowered the probability of surviving to adulthood by about ten percentage points, which is roughly twice the current burden of the disease. The reduction in malaria mortality has been roughly equal to the reduction in other causes of mortality. We then ask whether the estimated burden of malaria had an effect on economic development in the period before European contact. Examining both mortality and morbidity, we do not find evidence that the impact...
Published: Emilio Depetris-Chauvin & David N. Weil, 2016. "Malaria and Early African Development: Evidence from the Sickle Cell Trait," The Economic Journal, . citation courtesy of