Water Expansions in Shantytowns: Health and Savings

Sebastian Galiani, Martin Gonzalez-Rozada and Ernesto Schargrodsky , Economica 76(304) , 607-622 , October 2009.

This paper examines the effects of the expansion of the water network in urban shantytowns in Argentina. We find large reductions in the presence, frequency, and severity of diarrhea episodes among children in the households reached by network expansions relative to the control group. Moreover, expanded water connections induce savings, as these families are able to substitute piped water for more expensive and distant sources of water. These health and savings effects are also important for households that previously had clandestine self-connections to the water network, which were free but of low quality. 

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