Date of Graduation

Spring 5-12-2014

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in International and Development Economics (MSIDEC)



First Advisor

Dr. Jesse Anttila-Hughes


Typhoons are a unique type of natural disaster affecting both developing and developed countries, causing both short and long-term destruction. Typhoons are random both in intensity and frequency, making them difficult to predict their strength and when they will strike. With global climate change, typhoons are expected to increase in both frequency and magnitude, making it important to understand their impacts. This study uses DHS data from the Philippines and a unique Filipino typhoon data set covering they years 1989-2008 to explore how typhoons affect household allocation of basic human capital investments, such as breastfeeding duration. Using OLS estimation and a distributed lag model, I find that children are significantly breastfed about 4.8 months less on average in the year following a storm. This effect is mostly seen in lower socioeconomic households, suggesting that loss of income and adaptive behaviors of wealthier households are channels for these allocation decisions. No apparent gender differences were observed.