The Impact of Conflict on Child Health Outcomes: Micro-Level Evidence from Nigeria

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Oyinlola, Mutiu A.
Adeniyi, Oluwatosin
Adedeji, Abdulfatai A. Adedeji
Lipede, Omolola M.
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African Economic Research Consortium
Globally, the prevalence of conflicts has taken different dimensions due to exposure to different forms of conflict. Also, extant studies have linked conflict with health outcomes. However, existing studies face the challenge of comprehensive information on different conflict types. Thus, this study provides a comprehensive analysis of the impact of conflicts on child well-being in Nigeria. To achieve the goal, it classified the conflicts into three categories: aggregate, insurgency/terrorism, and herdsmen/farmers’ conflict. Furthermore, robust data are used by exploring four DHS waves (2003, 2008, 2013, and 2018) and integrating three conflict datasets using the MELTT technique. We present three steps of analysis for conflicts and child well-being based on this robust information. The impact of aggregate conflicts on child health outcomes, mechanisms, and across different groups was first investigated. Second, the impact of insurgency/terrorism on child health outcomes, mechanisms, and across different groups was examined. Third, the impact of herdsmen/farmers' conflict on child health outcomes, mechanisms, and across various groups was investigated. The results of a difference-in-difference approach suggest that proximity and exposure to different types of conflict worsened child health outcomes (infant mortality, height-for-age z-score, weight-for-age z-score and weight-for-height z-score). Also, vaccination,hospital visitation, and mother’s education are significantly affected by conflict types. Proximity and exposure to different conflict types forced people to migrate to less conflict-affected areas.