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Selective Mortality and the Long-Term Effects of Early-Life Exposure to Natural Disasters

Margaret Triyana, University of Chicago
Xing Xia, Yale-NUS College

We analyze the effects of early-life shocks with varying degrees of severity on mortality and human capital outcomes in the Philippines. We exploit variations in typhoon exposure and sharp increases in short-term disaster relief efforts in the 1960s. Severe typhoons are associated with increased mortality and adverse long-term outcomes. Before the increase in disaster relief efforts, mortality from in utero exposure to severe typhoons was 10 percent; survivors exhibited similar levels of human capital as the unaffected. After the increase in disaster relief, the mortality effects were mitigated; however, survivors exhibited lower human capital in the long term.

Keywords: Causal analysis / Causal estimation, Human capital and labour markets, Health and morbidity, Environmental studies

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  Presented in Session 115. Economic Policy and Health Outcomes