The income-climate trap of health development: A comparative analysis of African and non-African countries

Tang, Kam Ki, Petrie, Dennis and Rao, D. S. Prasada (2009) The income-climate trap of health development: A comparative analysis of African and non-African countries. Social Science & Medicine, 69 7: 1099-1106. doi:10.1016/j.socscimed.2009.07.016

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Author Tang, Kam Ki
Petrie, Dennis
Rao, D. S. Prasada
Title The income-climate trap of health development: A comparative analysis of African and non-African countries
Journal name Social Science & Medicine   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0277-9536
Publication date 2009-10
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1016/j.socscimed.2009.07.016
Volume 69
Issue 7
Start page 1099
End page 1106
Total pages 8
Editor E. Annandale
Place of publication Oxford, U.K
Publisher Elsevier
Collection year 2010
Language eng
Subject C1
140202 Economic Development and Growth
140208 Health Economics
Formatted abstract
This article conducts a comparative analysis of the interrelationship between climate, life expectancy and income between African and non-African countries. To put the analysis in a broader context of development, the paper develops an income-climate trap model that explains the multi-directional interaction between income, climate and life expectancy. It is suggested that the interaction can give rise to either a virtuous cycle of prosperity or a vicious cycle of poverty. Applying the model to a data set of 158 countries, we find that climate is a more important determinant of life expectancy in African countries than in non-African countries. We provide further empirical evidence that while climate is important in determining both life expectancy and income, income can in turn moderate the adverse effects of climate on life expectancy. In the past two decades, the income level of non-African countries has grown significantly while that of African countries has largely been stagnant, implying that the future development of African countries remains highly vulnerable to adverse climatic conditions. These findings have important implications in the context of climate change, as global warming is likely to create worsening climatic conditions that could see many less developed countries sinking deeper into an income-climate trap of underdevelopment in health.
© 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Keyword Mortality
Virtuous cycle
Vicious cycle
Climate change
Adaptive capacity
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: 2010 Higher Education Research Data Collection
School of Economics Publications
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 11 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
Scopus Citation Count Cited 10 times in Scopus Article | Citations
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Created: Mon, 22 Mar 2010, 18:29:25 EST by Alys Hohnen on behalf of School of Economics