The effects of social pensions on mortality among the extreme poor elderly

Jose Valderrama, Javier Olivera

Research output: Working paper

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We study the effects of Peru’s social pension programme Pension 65 on mortality. The programme provides a lifetime pension equivalent to 32 US dollars per month to individuals aged 65 and older who do not have other pensions and are officially classified as extreme poor. The analysis relies on survey data obtained at the baseline, which we match to mortality records for the period 2012 to 2019. We exploit the discontinuity around the welfare index used by the programme to determine eligibility, and estimate intention-to-treat effects in a regression discontinuity setting. We find that after seven years, the programme can reduce mortality among eligible people by about 11.4 percentage points. The programme could also increase the life expectancy of eligible people by one year. The results and back-of-the-envelope calculations indicate that the policy is cost effective.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationEsch-sur-Alzette
Number of pages52
Publication statusPublished - 4 Apr 2023

Publication series

NameWorking papers
ISSN (Electronic)2716-7445


  • non-contributory pensions
  • mortality
  • regression discontinuity
  • old-age poverty

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