Journal Article

Accounting for Heterogeneity in Growth Incidence in Cameroon Using Recentered Influence Function Regression

B. Essama-Nssah, Saumik Paul and Léandre Bassolé

in Journal of African Economies

Volume 22, issue 5, pages 757-795
Published in print November 2013 | ISSN: 0963-8024
Published online May 2013 | e-ISSN: 1464-3723 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/jae/ejt009
Accounting for Heterogeneity in Growth Incidence in Cameroon Using Recentered Influence Function Regression

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  • Welfare and Poverty
  • Economywide Country Studies
  • Urban, Rural, and Regional Economics
  • Microeconomics
  • Single Equation Models; Single Variables

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This paper frames growth incidence analysis within the logic of social impact evaluation understood as an assessment of variations in individual and social outcomes attributable to shocks and policies. It uses recentered influence function (RIF) regression to link the growth incidence curve to household characteristics and to perform counterfactual decomposition à la Oaxaca–Blinder to identify sources of variation in the distribution of consumption expenditure in Cameroon in 2001–2007. We find that the sectors of employment and geography are the main drivers of the observed pattern of growth through the structural effect. The composition effect accounts for a greater proportion of the observed variation in the social impact of growth. In particular, that effect tends to reduce poverty while the structural effect tends to increase it. This conclusion is robust with respect to the choice of poverty measures and RIF regression models. An important methodological lesson emerging from this study is that linear and non-linear specifications of the RIF regression lead to qualitatively similar results.

Keywords: C21; D31; I32; O55; R11

Journal Article.  9781 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Welfare and Poverty ; Economywide Country Studies ; Urban, Rural, and Regional Economics ; Microeconomics ; Single Equation Models; Single Variables

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