Decomposing the progress of child nutrition related Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) for sub-Saharan Africa (SSA): Importance of socioeconomic inequality, education and nutrition interventions

Monika S Sawhney, Tulane University
Mahmud Khan, Tulane University

The paper decomposes the progress in child nutrition for the SSA countries by considering the rate of economic progress, inequality in wealth distribution and educational status of women. For this analysis, macroeconomic data on income and income distribution were obtained from various sources. Additional data on food security, use of child health services, status of women, etc., were obtained from the Demographic Health Survey data. The results indicate the importance of economic progress in improving child nutritional status. The marginal effect of economic growth on child nutrition was so small that growth based strategies must be combined with other interventions to affect child nutritional status significantly. Combined effect of rapid economic growth (6% per year) and reduction in inequality (by lowering inequality index by 10% per year) will still be inadequate. Therefore, Africa needs to identify alternative social and educational interventions for rapid improvements in this MDG.

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Presented in Session 100: Human capital needs for achieving MDGs in Africa