Date of Graduation

Spring 5-10-2014

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in International and Development Economics (MSIDEC)



First Advisor

Jesse Anttila-Hughes


How does early life rainfall impact later life human capital outcomes in Bangladesh? This paper examines the effect of exogenous rainfall shocks that occur during individuals early-life on later life health, wealth and education outcomes of Bangladeshi women born between 1952-1988. I link historical rainfall for each woman’s birth year and Demographic and Health Survey (DHS) cluster of birth with current outcomes from the 1999/2000, 2004 and 2007 survey rounds of the DHS. This study finds that rural women with 20% higher than mean rainfall in their year and cluster of birth are on average 0.24 cm taller and score 0.053 higher on a wealth index (1-5). I find that 20% higher rainfall in the two seasons prior to birth leads to women attaining 0.097 more years of education. I find excess rainfall has a negative impact on height and education for women born in urban areas, but I give this result less attention due to the low number of observations of women born in urban areas in the sample.