The Welfare Cost of Homicides in Brazil: Accounting for Heterogeneity in the Willingness to Pay for Mortality Reductions
This paper estimates the health dimension of the welfare cost of homicides in Brazil
incorporating age, gender, educational, and regional heterogeneities. We use the marginal
willingness to pay approach from the “value of life” literature to assign monetary values to the
welfare cost of increased mortality due to violence. The results indicate that the present
discounted value of the welfare cost of homicides in Brazil corresponds to roughly 78% of the
GDP or, measured in terms of yearly flow, 2.3%. The analysis also indicates that reliance on
aggregate data to perform such calculations, without taking into account the relevant dimensions
of heterogeneity, can lead to biases of the order of 20% in the estimated social cost of violence.
Texto para discussão no. 600
Daniel Ricardo de Castro Cerqueira, Rodrigo Reis Soares.