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American Economic Journal: Economic Policy: Vol. 1 No. 1 (February 2009)

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Housing, Health, and Happiness

Article Citation

Cattaneo, Matias D., Sebastian Galiani, Paul J. Gertler, Sebastian Martinez, and Rocio Titiunik. 2009. "Housing, Health, and Happiness." American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, 1(1): 75-105.

DOI: 10.1257/pol.1.1.75

Abstract

We investigate the impact of a large-scale Mexican program to replace dirt floors with cement floors on child health and adult happiness. We find that replacing dirt floors with cement significantly improves the health of young children measured by decreases in the incidence of parasitic infestations, diarrhea, and the prevalence of anemia, and an improvement in children's cognitive development. Additionally, we find significant improvements in adult welfare measured by increased satisfaction with their housing and quality of life, as well as by lower scores on depression and perceived stress scales. (JEL I12, I31, J13, O15)

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Authors

Cattaneo, Matias D. (U MI)
Galiani, Sebastian (Washington U in St Louis)
Gertler, Paul J. (U CA, Berkeley)
Martinez, Sebastian (World Bank)
Titiunik, Rocio (U CA, Berkeley)

JEL Classifications

I12: Health Production
I31: General Welfare
J13: Fertility; Family Planning; Child Care; Children; Youth
O15: Economic Development: Human Resources; Human Development; Income Distribution; Migration

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