Klasing, Mariko Jasmin Klasing, Mariko J. Milionis, Petros
Year of Publication:
Beiträge zur Jahrestagung des Vereins für Socialpolitik 2016: Demographischer Wandel - Session: Gender E16-V3
We explore the impact of the international epidemiological transition on educational outcomes of males and females over the second half of the 20th century. We provide strong evidence that the large resulting declines in mortality rates from infectious diseases gave rise to differential life expectancy gains across genders, with females benefiting mostly from them due to their greater responsiveness to vaccination. We also document that these gender differences in life expectancy gains are subsequently reflected in similar differential increases in educational outcomes for males and females. Using an instrumental variables strategy that exploits pre-intervention variation in mortality rates across different infectious diseases we confirm the causal nature of these effects and show that the magnitude of the effects account for a large share of the reduction in the education gender gap that emerged over this period.