Links to Project Descriptions
Large-Farm Consolidation and Welfare in Rural Economies
Status: Data Analysis
The consolidation of farmland is accelerating in many developing countries. I evaluate the effects of large-farm consolidation on rural welfare using a quantitative model where the distribution of farms affects the demand for workers in the agricultural and nonagricultural sectors. Farm labor intensity depends on the scale of operation, while nonfarm employment is swayed by non-homothetic consumption growth. This model is consistent with the impacts of consolidation on rural employment over the nineties in Colombia. Preliminary findings show that large-farm consolidation increases agricultural profit but reduces the income of rural workers, a large majority of the agents in the economy. As a result, aggregate welfare declines despite gains in agricultural productivity. These welfare effects vary by type of consolidation and are exacerbated when the rise of large operations is driven by merging the smallest farms.
Forced Displacement and Early Nutritional Development
Status: Data Analysis
Forced displacement is one of the main development challenges in developing countries. Of the 82.4 million forcibly displaced people worldwide, 86% are hosted in low and middle-income countries (UNHCR, 2020). The goal of this paper is to estimate the impact of internal displacement on early nutrition and health. Using a rich dataset of households displaced during the conflict in Colombia, I compare siblings born before and after the forced migration took place. This analysis will shed light on the effects of forced migration on the accumulation of human capital and its implications for public policies targeted at displaced children.
The Economic Impacts of Medical Drone Delivery (with Oscar Barriga-Cabanillas and Aleksander Michuda)
Status: Data Agreement in Progress
The lack of road infrastructure can hinder access to vaccines and medicines necessary to promote health. Unmanned aviation drones are a new technology that can help deliver these health supplies in remote locations. Using a novel dataset from an emergency drone delivery service and quasi-experimental variation in its radius of influence, we examine the effects of this new technology on health outcomes. This data will also allow us to examine effects on local employment. This new technology employs a considerable amount of people across the different distribution centers and, thereby, has the potential to prompt a shift of labor out of the agricultural sector.
Industries, Employment, and Clientelism in Local Economies
Status: Data Requested
Public jobs account for a substantial share of rural non-farm employment. These jobs are usually formal and offer high earnings prospects. In this paper, I will explore the political economy implications of the composition of non-farm employment. In particular, I will examine whether towns with agro-industries display a lower incidence of patronage, using a rich household survey that elicits the willingness to sell the vote in return for a favor in rural Colombia. The results of this study will shed light on the relationship between the political process and the transformation of rural economies.