Munich Personal RePEc Archive

Life After The Storm: The Effect of L’Aquila Earthquake on Marriage Rates

Cicatiello, Lorenzo and Ercolano, Salvatore and Gaeta, Giuseppe Lucio and Parenti, Benedetta (2019): Life After The Storm: The Effect of L’Aquila Earthquake on Marriage Rates.

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Natural disasters represent a challenge for policy-makers both for the immediate aftermath and for the mid- and long-term consequences. Knowing the reaction of the struck communities is an invaluable help for planning and implementing informed policies. Embracing such a perspective, this paper aims to provide empirical evidence about the effect that natural disasters exert on the marriage rates reported by the struck communities. The analysis is focused on L’Aquila earthquake that occurred in 2009 and stroke a number of municipalities in the Abruzzo Region in Southern Italy. We exploit a natural experiment setting via a difference-in-differences design, using highly disaggregate data (municipality level) in order to assess whether the shock caused by the L’Aquila earthquake in 2009 resulted in a substantial variation of the marriage rate in the municipalities hit more severely by the natural disaster. We find that the municipalities that payed a higher toll show an increasing higher marriage rate with respect to those that did not experienced major damages.

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