Essays on social protection

Valli, Elsa (2017) Essays on social protection. Doctoral thesis (PhD), University of Sussex.

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This thesis analyses issues related to aid in Ethiopia and provision of elder care in the US.
The first essay assesses the targeting of two major aid interventions, public works and food aid.
Both types of aid are primarily allocated through community-based targeting. The few studies
that have analysed the accuracy of aid targeting in Ethiopia have shown biases along demography,
geography and political affiliations lines. With the introduction in 2005 of the Productive Safety
Net Programme (PSNP), a major social protection programme, several administrative guidelines
were introduced aimed at improving targeting. This paper uses the last two rounds of the Ethiopian
Rural Household Survey to investigate whether there were changes in both targeting determinants,
and amount received for PSNP public works and food aid components from 2004 to 2009. Overall,
the PSNP appears to be allocated on the basis of observable-poverty-related characteristics, and
food aid on household demographics. In addition, results suggest for both PSNP and food aid
beneficiaries, political connections are significant in determining receipt of the program in 2004,
but no longer in 2009, indicating an improvement towards means-based targeting.
The second essay investigates the long-term effectiveness of emergency aid in Ethiopia in pro-
tecting child health from the negative effects of a severe drought that hit the country in 2011.
Child malnutrition remains a critical issue in Ethiopia and the literature has shown that shocks
can have long lasting effects on physical and cognitive development. Using the two rounds of the
Ethiopian Rural Socioeconomic Survey (ERSS) collected in 2011 and 2013, I explore the impact of
emergency aid on child height-for-age aged 0-36 months two years after the drought had occurred.
Because aid was not randomly allocated, I use a matching estimator to account for selection into
the programme. The results show that emergency aid was effective in protecting children that
experienced the drought.
In the last essay, I research the effects of kindergarten eligibility on the provision of elder care
in the US. I am able to identify the trade-off between child care and elder care by exploiting
age eligibility criterion for public kindergarten, in combination with state-level variation, in the
provision of full-time kindergarten. Through a reduced form approach, I estimate the Intention
to Treat (ITT) for the effect of eligibility to kindergarten on provision of elder care. The results
show that having the youngest child aged 5 in states that offer full-time kindergarten increases
the probability of providing elder care by around 9 percentage points, which corresponds to 63
percentage increase to the baseline. The effect is higher for females (9.2) than for males (8.1).

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Schools and Departments: University of Sussex Business School > Economics
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HV Social pathology. Social and public welfare. Criminology > HV0697 Protection, assistance and relief
Depositing User: Library Cataloguing
Date Deposited: 02 Aug 2017 15:31
Last Modified: 02 Aug 2017 15:31

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