Long-term effects of the Inca Road

Produced by: 
National Bureau of Economic Research
Available from: 
July 2021
Paper author(s): 
Ana Paula Franco
Sebastian Galiani
Pablo Lavado
Macroeconomics - Economic growth - Monetary Policy

The Inca Empire was the last of a long series of highly developed cultures in pre-colonial South America. It stretched across parts of the current territories of Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador and the whole of Peru. The Inca Road was its 30,000-kilometer-long transportation system. The aim of this study is to identify its long-term impact on current development in Peru. Our results show that the long-run effect of the Inca Road includes increases in wages and educational attainment, a reduction of child malnutrition and an increase in children’s mathematics test scores. We also find that these effects are around 20% greater for women and explore the mechanisms that may account for this pattern.


Research section: 
Latest Research
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