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Unformatted text preview: ECON 4411A, Fall 2011 Development Economics Summary Notes: Week Seven, Lesson 1 Education and Health in Economic Development Quote of the day: Education is fundamental to enhancing the quality of human life and ensuring social and economic progress. United Nation Report, 1997 Linkages between Education and Health Education and Health are the most important inputs to human capital growth or accumulation. Human capital is a term economist use for education, health and other human capacities that can raise an individuals productivity when increased. Health and Education issues feedback to each other. Hence, the effectiveness of the education system is affected by health spending and vice versa. There are several linkages between education and health. First, health and education are investments made in the same individual and directly affect human capital. Second, greater health capital may raise the returns to education for several reasons. 1. Health is an important factor in school attendance. 2. Healthier children are more successful in school and learn more efficiently. 3. Death of school age children also increase the cost of education per worker. 4. Longer life span raise the return to investment in education. 5. Healthier individuals are more able to productively use education at any given point in their lifes. Third, greater education capital may raise the returns to investment in health because many health programs rely on knowledge from research and skills learned in school (including literacy and numeracy). Schools also pass knowledge on sanitation and personal hygiene which can improve or maintain health. Education is absolutely necessary for formation and training of health personnel. Finally, another linkage between these two issues is that improvement in productive efficiency from investment in education raises the return on a life saving investment in health. Improving health and education-Evidence of Benefits Even though the common suggestion for improving health and education is to improve income levels, this sometimes might not be the best solution. We know that higher income people and government can afford to spend more on education and health and with greater health and education comes improved productivity, which then feeds into higher income. However, increasing income is not sufficient. 1 Several researcher have noted that using policy tools to increase income does not necessarily feed into improved nutrition in families both in LDCs. The income elasticities for calories in many LDCs are really low and even in the case where these elasticities are higher, increased calories does not translate to increased nutrition and the nutrition of the earners and children are very different. Unfortunately, increase in income can also lead to the increase in con- venience [fast food] consumption in developing countries which definitely does not improve nutrition of children (for example switching from nutritious food like rice and beans to soda and candy definitely does not help nutrition). Also,like rice and beans to soda and candy definitely does not help nutrition)....
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- Fall '11