(University of Geneva)
will give a presentation on
This paper shows that personality traits are affected by random negative economic shocks experienced at different stages of life. Combining individual panel data with rainfall variations during the growing season in Ethiopia, we find that past droughts experienced during adolescence have a persistent effect on adulthood self-esteem, lowering self-esteem by 0.3 standard deviations. We also find that parental self-esteem has a causal impact on child self-esteem. Results emphasizes that economic adversity experienced during formative years of behavioral development has a persistent effect, which may then be transmitted across generations. We lastly observe that individuals who have faced such a shock during their adolescence accumulate less assets as adults.