Seminars & Events

APL (Ajiken Power Lunch)

Famine and Wealth Inequality: Evidence from China

APL (Ajiken Power Lunch) is a lunchtime workshop open to public, including IDE staffs, visiting research fellows, IDEAS students, outside researchers and graduate students. This workshop provides a platform for presentation of any work in progress where we can discuss in either English or Japanese.

Those who would attend a seminar are asked to announce yourself to receptionists on your arrival at the IDE and to obtain APL Organizers' signature on your admission card after the seminar.


January 24, 2019. (Thursday) 13:00-14:30


Famine and Wealth Inequality: Evidence from China

Conflict and fragility such as famines, wars, and civil conflicts are persistent and still seen in many developing and middle-income countries today. For example, more than 22 million people are affected by the drought in East Africa at present, and at least 15 million people are going hungry. Similarly, around 6.8 million people are on extreme hunger in Yemen, around 13.5 million people are in need of assistance in Syria and around 5 million refugees have fled to other countries. This paper examines the long-run direct and persistent impact of such extreme events on wealth inequality. In this paper, we consider the impact of Chinese Great Famine (1959-61) on wealth inequality in present China more than 5 decades afterward. Using province-by-cohortlevel variation in the famine intensity as a quasi-experiment, we find that those who are born during the famine period and exposed to the famine possess lower wealth. Our findings suggest that the consequences of fragile and extreme events (such as famine in our case) not only cause a deterioration in the short-term economic and social outcomes, but such events could also cause substantial future economic inequality in the long-run.

Pramod Kumar Sur (Osaka University)




Institute of Developing Economies, APL Organizers
E-mail: APLE-mail