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Title:Food aid and informal insurance PDF Logo
Authors:Dercon, Stefan
Krishnan, Pramila
Issue Date:2003
Series/Report no.:WIDER Discussion Papers // World Institute for Development Economics (UNU-WIDER) 2003/09
Abstract:Households in developing countries use a variety of informal mechanisms to cope with risk, including mutual support and risk-sharing. These mechanisms cannot avoid that they remain vulnerable to shocks. Public programs in the form of food aid distribution and food-for-work programs are meant to protect vulnerable households from consumption and nutrition downturns by providing a safety net. In this paper we look into the extent to which food aid helps to smooth consumption by reducing the impact of negative shocks, taking into account informal risk-sharing arrangements. Using panel data from Ethiopia, we find that despite relatively poor targeting of the food aid, the programs contribute to better consumption outcomes, largely via intra-village risk sharing.
Subjects:risk-sharing
informal insurance
safety nets
food aid
JEL:D91
I38
O17
ISBN:9291904015
Document Type:Working Paper
Appears in Collections:WIDER Discussion Papers, United Nations University (UNU)

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