Dominique Van De Walle

Thematic seminars
Development and political economy seminar

Dominique Van De Walle

World Bank Group
Marital shocks and women’s welfare in Africa
Joint with
Marie Albertine Djuikom

IBD Amphi

Îlot Bernard du Bois - Amphithéâtre

5-9 boulevard Maurice Bourdet
13001 Marseille

Friday, April 6 2018| 12:00pm to 1:15pm

Timothée Demont: timothee.demont[at]
Alice Fabre: alice.fabre[at]


Marital shocks are exceedingly common for women in Sub-Saharan Africa. The paper investigates whether women who have suffered a marital rupture experience lower welfare levels relative to married women in their first union. Conditional means for women's nutritional status are compared by marital status across 20 countries. Overall, the results indicate significantly lower nutritional status for Africa's widows and divorcees between ages 15 and 49. With some exceptions, this is found to be the case with country and household fixed effects and controls for HIV status. However, looking at country-specific associations underlines that disadvantage is by no means universal.