The Power of Markets: Impact of Desert Locust Invasions on Child Health

Augustin Tapsoba ( Toulouse School of Economics)

October 13, 2020, 14:00–15:00


Room Zoom Meeting


This paper investigates the consequences of a locust plague that occurred in Mali in 2004. We provide evidence of substantial crop market effects that explain the space-time pattern of the estimated impact of this shock. We argue first that the plague has affected households in Mali through two channels: first, a speculative price effect that kicked in during the plague itself, followed by a local crop failure effect. We find that, in terms of health setbacks, children exposed in utero only to the speculative price effect suffered as much as those exposed to the actual crop failure effect. Once we account for the impact on local crop prices, the estimated speculative effect vanishes, whereas the crop failure effect persists. Children born in isolated areas suffer more from the crop failure effect. Our results suggest that addressing local market reactions to this type of agricultural shocks is crucial for policy design.


Augustin Tapsoba ( Toulouse School of Economics), The Power of Markets: Impact of Desert Locust Invasions on Child Health, IAST Lunch Seminar, Toulouse: IAST, October 13, 2020, 14:00–15:00, room Zoom Meeting.