12:30—2:00 PM
Center for Global Development
2055 L St, NW
- Fifth Floor
Washington, DC 20036

The Impact of Civil Conflict on Child Malnutrition and Mortality


Embry Howell, Senior Fellow, Urban Institute

Timothy Waidmann, Senior Fellow, Urban Institute

Nancy Birdsall, Senior Fellow, President Emeritus, Center for Global Development


Sebastian Bauhoff, Senior Fellow, Center for Global Development


Justin Sandefur, Senior Fellow, Center for Global Development

Numerous studies find that child health suffers when children are exposed to conflict, and armed conflicts are more likely to occur in poor countries with weak states. Nigeria is among the most conflict-prone countries in the world, experiencing the highest number of conflict-related deaths of all Sub-Saharan African countries in many of the years since 2000, with a peak in 2012. In this paper, researchers at the Urban Institute and the Center for Global Development are studying the relationship between child health and conflict in Nigeria by combining geo-coded data from the Demographic and Health Survey (DHS) of 2013 and the Social Conflict Analysis Database. In both urban and rural areas of Nigeria, they find significant increases in child wasting (acute malnutrition) in 2013 associated with proximity to violent conflict in 2012. In urban areas, infant mortality also increased significantly in 2003-2013, when the mother was exposed to conflict during pregnancy. They will discuss these findings and their implications, as well as some of the challenges to studying health in conflict-torn places.

Subscribe today to receive CGD’s latest newsletters and topic updates.