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Posts by Diane Coffey

Despite improvements in child health, why do so many newborns still die?

The ‘Million Death Study’ shows that the death rate of under-five children in India dropped from about 90 per 1,000 to about 47 during 2000-2015. However, improvements in death rates in the first ...

Why doesn’t anybody know if Swachh Bharat Mission is succeeding?

In 2014, the Prime Minister announced a goal of eliminating open defecation by 2019. In this article, Coffey and Spears, contend that now almost two-thirds of the way through the Swachh Bharat Mission...

Maternity entitlements for healthier babies

The National Food Security Act, 2013 provides for a maternity benefit of not less than Rs. 6,000 for every pregnant and lactating mother in India. In this article, Coffey and Hathi explain why materni...

Angus Deaton's ideas for India

In a tribute to Angus Deaton, the 2015 Nobel laureate in Economics, Diane Coffey and Dean Spears – former graduate students of Prof. Deaton at Princeton University – review some of his work on th...

Is maternal health in India worse than we thought?

Since India does not have a national system to monitor health during pregnancy, the fraction of women of child-bearing age who are underweight - 35.5% - is used as a proxy for the fraction of pre-pre...

Switching to sanitation in South Asia: A study of health technology adoption (a seed study)

Open defecation in rural India presents a puzzle: India has far higher open defecation rates than other developing regions where people are poorer, literacy rates are lower, and water is more scarce.

Culture, religion and open defecation in rural north India

Open defecation in rural India is a human development emergency that is causing infant deaths, child stunting, and widespread infectious diseases. This column presents surprising qualitative and quan...

Short-term migration and child welfare

While much has been said about the poor working and living conditions of short-term migrants, relatively little is known of the impact of short-term migration on child welfare. This column finds that ...

Does mother's status affect the child's stature?

Both women’s status and children’s health in South Asia are abysmal. Can a well-defined link be established from women’s status to child health? This column presents results of a study that uses...