DP8915 Household Responses to Information on Child Nutrition: Experimental Evidence from Malawi

Author(s): Emla Fitzsimons, Bansi Malde, Alice Mesnard, Marcos Vera-Hern√°ndez
Publication Date: March 2012
Keyword(s): cluster randomised control trial, health information, infant health
JEL(s): D10, I15, I18, O12, O15
Programme Areas: Development Economics
Link to this Page: cepr.org/active/publications/discussion_papers/dp.php?dpno=8915

This paper provides evidence on household responses to the relaxation of one barrier constraining adoption of health practices - lack of information - in a resource constrained setting. It examines the effects of a randomized intervention in Malawi which provides mothers with information on infant nutrition and health. It finds that the intervention results in increases in household food consumption, particularly of protein-rich foods by children. The increased household consumption is funded by increased father?s labor supply, constituting evidence that changes in the perceived child health production function affect adult labor supply. Improved consumption also results in better child health.