Although family planning services are crucial for global health and the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals, their funding remains controversial. Here we document the health consequences of the ``Mexico City Policy" (MCP), which restricts US funding for abortion-related activities worldwide. Since its enactment in 1985, MCP has been enforced only under Republican administrations and quickly rescinded when a Democrat wins the presidency. Our analysis shows that MCP makes it harder for women to get information on and support for reproductive health and is associated with higher maternal and child mortality rates and HIV rates worldwide. We estimate that re-instating MCP between 2017-2021 resulted in approximately 108,000 maternal and child deaths as well as 360,000 new HIV infections.
With Kerim Can Kavakli
Battiston, P., Gamba, S., Rotondi, V. (2019) "What does a young cheater look like? An innovative approach" in A. Bucciol and N. Montinari, "Dishonesty in Behavioral Economics", Elsevier.
Pesando, L., Rotondi, V. (2020: forthcoming) "Mobile technology and gender equality" in Encyclopedia of the UN Sustainable Development Goals. Gender Equality.
During the fifteenth century AD, the Franciscans gave birth to the first "ethical" bank: the Monti di Pietà which were used to give small loans at relatively low (or null) rates. In this paper, we focus on the relationship between the existence of Monti di Pietà back in the past and social capital today.
While both the conventional wisdom and the Second Demographic Transition theory suggest that having children is rewarding for individuals and increases their life satisfaction and happiness, the empirical literature across different disciplines has not yet found a clear answer on neither the direction nor the magnitude of the association between childbearing and happiness. Here we explore a possible mechanism that might explain the association between parenthood and happiness: the neuro-anatomical changes occurring to parental brains when transitioning into parenthood and the role played by empathy. After birth and two years afterwards women show
reduced gray matter volumes in regions subserving social cognition and in particular the amygdala, insula, precuneus, superior
temporal and medial prefrontal areas. Also fathers experience changes in their brain, although of smaller size.
These changes also affect affective domains, such as empathy and social emotions. At the same time, the literature documents that emotional distress and the perception of other people's pain activate neural structures (including the anterior cingulate cortex, anterior insula, and the amygdala) that are also involved in the direct experience of pain. As a result, we expect to find a negative relationship between parenting and happiness mediated by an increase in the ability to feel others' pain. We test this hypothesis by leveraging the richness of the UK Biobank Dataset including the collection of genome-wide genetic data and resting and task-based fMRI of around 100000 participants aged 40--69 years old. Through the developed world, the high level of childlessness and the decrease in family size among those having children are timely and pressing policy issues. The fact that, in many although not all industrialized societies, parents report lower levels of happiness than childless adults might possibly fuel the perception that having children is not rewarding thus reducing the desire to become parents. Understanding the reasons behind the usually observed negative correlation between parenthood and happiness is, therefore, crucial.
With: Nicola Barban, Ridhi Kashyap, Carlo Reverberi, and Maria Sironi
2. "What exactly is public in a public good game? A lab-in-the-field experiment", 2018. With Pietro Battiston, Simona Gamba, and Matteo Rizzolli. Under revision.
3. "Mobile money and the labor market: Evidence from Africa", 2021. With Chiara De Gasperin, Ridhi Kashyap, Azzurra Olmeti, and Luca Stanca. Jan 2022. Under revision.
4. "Cooperative Credit Banks and Social Capital. Evidence from Italy". With Domenico Rossignoli. 2022. Under revision.
5. "Cooperation after COVID-19. A qualitative and experimental analysis from Switzerland". With Masiar Babazadeh, Maria Caiata Zufferey, Giuseppe Landolfi, Margherita Luciani, and Laura Uccella. 2022. Under revision.
6. "Impact of Home Gardening on Production and Diet Diversification. Evidence from a Field Experiment in Ethiopia", with Jacopo Bonan and Stefano Pareglio, 2015. WP 312, DEMS University of Milan-Bicocca.