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Traditional beliefs and learning about maternal risk in Zambia

Ashraf, Nava and Field, Erica and Rusconi, Giuditta and Voena, Alessandra and Ziparo, Roberta (2017) Traditional beliefs and learning about maternal risk in Zambia. American Economic Review, 107 (5). pp. 511-515. ISSN 0002-8282

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Identification Number: 10.1257/aer.p20171106

Abstract

Maternal mortality remains very high in many parts of the developing world, especially in sub-Saharan Africa. While maternal deaths are observable, it may not be straightforward for individuals to learn about risk factors. This paper utilizes novel data on male and female perceptions of maternal risk in Zambia to document that superstitions about causes of maternal mortality are pervasive and to uncover evidence that such beliefs impede learning about maternal health risk levels and correlates. In our data, people who hold traditional beliefs disregard past birth complications completely in assessing future risk, unlike those who hold modern beliefs.

Item Type: Article
Official URL: https://www.aeaweb.org/journals/aer
Additional Information: © 2017 American Economic Association
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HQ The family. Marriage. Woman
Sets: Departments > Economics
Date Deposited: 22 Jun 2017 10:20
Last Modified: 23 Jun 2017 09:39
URI: http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/id/eprint/82014

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