Agricultural policy, migration, and malaria in the United States in the 1930s

Alan I. Barreca, Price V. Fishback, Shawn Kantor

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


The Agricultural Adjustment Act (AAA) was associated with a population shift in the United States in the 1930s. Evaluating the relationship between the AAA and the incidence of malaria can therefore offer important lessons regarding the broader consequences of demographic changes. Using a quasi-first difference model and a robust set of controls, we find a negative association between AAA expenditures and malaria death rates at the county level. Further, we find that the AAA was associated with increased out-migration of low-income groups from counties with high-risk malaria ecologies. These results suggest that the AAA-induced migration played an important role in the reduction of malaria.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)381-398
Number of pages18
JournalExplorations in Economic History
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 2012


  • Agricultural policy
  • Demographic change
  • Malaria
  • Migration

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • History
  • Economics and Econometrics


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