The Future of Infant Health and Mortality in Sub-Saharan Africa: Evaluating the Relative Importance of Changes in Socio-Economics versus Climate

Kathryn Grace, University of Utah
Frank Davenport, University of California, Santa Barbara
Chris Funk, University of California, Santa Barbara

To reduce infant mortality, and given limited resources, is it best to invest in development strategies or in climate mitigation strategies? The goal of this research is to begin to answer that question through the exploration of infant health and mortality in sub-Saharan Africa with attention to the climate and socio-economic scenarios. To conduct this analysis we rely on five different shared socioeconomic pathways (SSPs), climate scenarios (specifically rainfall and temperature) and geocoded infant health and mortality data from Demographic and Health Survey (DHS) data from 21 African countries. Using these data we examine the sensitivity of infant health and mortality to potential future climate and development scenarios. Preliminary research indicates that investment in climate mitigation may be as important as investment in socio-economic development.

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 Presented in Session P6. Migration and Urbanization/Population, Development, and the Environment