lecture3_1_09_11_long

lecture3_1_09_11_long - LECTURE 3: Historical Health...

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LECTURE 3: Historical Health Improvement and Empirical Methods Primer
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Dissension in the ranks: sing a strategy loosely akin to Fogel (choose a specific Using a strategy loosely akin to Fogel (choose a specific technological progress candidate and estimate its contribution; if magnitude of contribution is large, may i l dd b d ti b t th l f persuasively address broader question about the roles of economic growth vs. technological progress in health), focus on clean water rather than nutrition •We will use this as an example to begin thinking more itically about research design critically about research design
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How was water quality improved historically? •Water and sanitation infrastructure vs. disinfection technologies: “The present water closte system, with all its boasted advantages, is e worst that can generally be adopted briefly because it is a most the worst that can generally be adopted, briefly because it is a most extravagant method of converting a mole-hill into a mountain. It merely removes the bulk of our excreta from our houses to choke our rivers with foul deposits and rot at our neighbors’ door. It introduces into our houses a most deadly enemy.” - Chemist quoted in the Scientific American , 1869 •The urban mortality ‘penalty’ – from the middle of the 19 th ntury through the turn of the 20 ntury life expectancy in century through the turn of the 20 th century, life expectancy in cities was 10 years below life expectancy in rural areas hy? Why?
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Conclusive evidence on the importance of water disinfection
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Water quality continues to be a leading health issue in developing countries today •1.1 billion people worldwide lack access to clean water •2.4 billion people lack adequate sanitation •Cutting the propotion of people lacking clean water and adequate sanitation in half by 2015 is one of the ambitious UN Millennium l t G l Development Goals
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Building the historical case for clean water: Suppose we gather data on early 20 th century U.S. cities and run the following regression: Mortality c = α + β (Clean Water c ) + ε c •How do we interpret our estimate of β if ‘Clean Water’ is a continuous water quality index (say [0,100]) and ‘Mortality’ is the mortality rate in city c ? hat if lean Water’ i a dichotemous variable (a dummy Wa t Clean Wate s a d c ote ous va ab e (a du y variable) denoting good water quality? •Does a negative, ‘statistically significant’ estimate of β mean that ean water lowers mortality? clean water lowers mortality? •What else might be going on? •Remember the GM orthogonality assumption… (Gauss-Markov, ot Grant Miller ) r example true relationship could be: not Grant Miller…) for example, true relationship could be: Mortality c = α + β 1 (Clean Water c ) + β 2 (Vaccine Campaign c )+ ε c, here 0 d ov(Clean Water Vaccine Campaign 0 where β 2 <0 and Cov(Clean Water,Vaccine Campaign )>0 •If estimate without ‘Vaccine Campaign,’ what’s the implication for the estimate of β 1 ?
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Fogel Revisited: What did nutrition paper do on this front?
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Fogel Revisited: What did nutrition paper do on this front?
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This note was uploaded on 03/19/2011 for the course ECON 127 taught by Professor Staff during the Winter '11 term at Stanford.

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lecture3_1_09_11_long - LECTURE 3: Historical Health...

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