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The Journal of Economic Inequality

, Volume 14, Issue 4, pp 395–416 | Cite as

Inequality of opportunity in adult health in Colombia

  • Johanna Fajardo-GonzalezEmail author
Article

Abstract

This paper measures inequality of opportunity in adult health in Colombia using the 2010 Living Standards and Social Mobility Survey, a rich dataset that provides unique information about individual childhood circumstances in that country. Dissimilarity and Gini-opportunity indexes are calculated to provide different measures of inequality of opportunity using a self-reported variable for health status. The Shapley-value decomposition is then used to estimate the contribution of early-life circumstances such as parental background, region of origin and ethnicity to inequality of opportunity. The findings suggest that 8 % to 10 % of the circumstance-driven opportunities distinctively enjoyed by those who are healthier should be redistributed or otherwise compensated in order to achieve equality of opportunity. Differences in household socio-economic status during childhood and parental educational attainment appear to be the most salient dimensions of inequality of opportunity in adult health.

Keywords

Childhood Colombia Health Inequality Opportunity 

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Applied EconomicsUniversity of MinnesotaSt. PaulUSA

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