Economic impact of Ebola virus disease in Western African countries.


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The Ebola outbreak in Western Africa from 2014 to 2016 infected 28600 people and claimed lives of 11325 people. It is the worst and the longest Ebola outbreak since the first recorded Ebola outbreak in 1976. The World bank estimated the cost of this outbreak is approximately $4 billion. In this thesis, I estimate the impact of the spread of ebola on economic activity in Western African countries. Economic activity is measured with nighttime light intensity from satellite measurements. The use night time lights allows higher frequency more geographically disaggregated measure. Using distance to ground zero as an instrument for my empirical analysis, I find that the GDP for Sierra Leone decreases by 3.26 percent, GDP for Guinea decreases by 5.1 percent, and the GDP for Liberia decreases by 51.82 percent. I also employ a dif-in-dif model and find that Ebola outbreak has no long-term effect on GDP.



Pandemics. Ebola. Nighttime light. Instrumental variable. Dif-in-dif.