Household Panel Data (1998-2007-2012)  for Burundi

I have been the principal researcher in a long-term effort to collect household survey data in Burundi spanning a period of 15 years. The database constitutes a panel of households interviewed in three waves, 1998, 2007 and 2012.

The first wave was collected in 1998 by the World Bank and the ISTEEBU, Burundi’s national center for statistics and economic studies.  This wave collected information on 3900 rural households in 390 rural clusters together with 2400 urban households. The data contain information on household composition, residence, health, education, economic activities and welfare as well as child anthropometrics. Wave 2 and wave 3 data are only for a subset of the rural households.

In 2007, a team of researchers from the University of Antwerp (where the principal researcher was at that time), Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB) and Wageningen University in cooperation with ISTEEBU set out to re-interview 1.000 households in a random selection of 100 clusters from the 390 rural clusters. The data collection was financed by MICROCON (EU 6th framework), US Institute of Peace, Wageningen University and the Fund for Scientific Research (FWO, Flanders).  The team was able to re-interview 872 of the original households as well as 536 split-of households, defined as new households constituted in the period between wave 1 and wave 2 by members of original household who in 1998 were still residing in that household. A total of 1408 households were interviewed. The team also fielded a community level survey.

In 2012, a team from the Université libre de Bruxelles (new home of the principal researcher) set out to collect a third wave of data, this time financed by the FNRS. We re-interviewed original as well as split-of households. This time we did  not track households who constituted a new split after 2007. In wave 3, a new module on intra-household expenditures and decision making was fielded among both spouses of a household. A total of 1.239 households were re-interviewed.

I am in the process of making the data available for interested researchers through an established depository of household surveys. In the meantime, researchers who already want access to the data can contact me directly. Apart from the presentation of the panel and the description of the data, the principal researcher nor his current or former team members have the resources to answer questions on the data.  We are making the data available,  but it is up to the user to make good use of it. Familiarizing oneself with a dataset is an intense and very time-consuming undertaking. We are not able to reply to requests to explain the data. From researchers who want to work with the data on themselves, it is expected that they fully acknowledge the source of the data in the following form

“Burundi Priority Household Panel Survey 1998-2007-2012, European Centre for Advanced Research in Economics and Statistics,  Université libre de Bruxelles”

Below you can find a list of papers that have been written by researchers using the data. If you are interested in one or more of the data sets and you have an interesting research project that you want to pursue, then you may contact these researchers to discuss potential collaboration. They have worked with the data and they are familiar with Burundi, which may save you a lot of time compared to figuring it out by yourself.  


List of published papers written with the data (updated till December 2020)


(Working Papers using these data can be found at .  We note that several papers on Burundi use other household level data than the Priority Panel presented here).

Mercier, Marion, Lionel Ngezenbuke and Philip Verwimp, 2020, "Violence Exposure and Poverty: Evidence from the Burundi Civil War, Journal of Comparative Economics, May  

Mercier, Marion and Philip Verwimp, 2017, “Are we counting all the poor? Accounting for the intra-household allocation of consumption in Burundi, Journal of Demographic Economics, 83, 3, 307-327.

Ngenzebuke, Lionel, Bram De Rock and Philip Verwimp, 2016, “The Power of the Family: Kinship and Intra-Household Decision Making in Burundi”,  Review of the Economics of the Household, June, Vol14, n2

Familiar,I., B.Hall, T.Bundervoet, Ph.Verwimp and J.Bass, 2016, “Exploring Psychological Distress in Burundi during and after the Armed Conflict”, Community Mental Health Journal , Volume 52, Issue 1, pp 32–38

Sabates-Wheeler, Rachel and Philip Verwimp, 2014,  “Extortion with Protection: Understanding the effect of rebel taxation on civilian welfare in Burundi”, Journal of Conflict Resolution, December, vol. 58  no. 8  1474-1499

Voors, Maarten and Erwin Bulte, 2014, Conflict and the evolution of institutions: Unbundling institutions at the local level in Burundi, Journal of Peace Research, 51, 4, 455-469

Beekman, Gonne and Erwin Bulte, 2012, Social norms, tenure security and soil conservation: Evidence from Burundi, Agricultural Systems, 108, 50-63.

Voors, Maarten, Eleonora Nillesen, Philip Verwimp, Erwin Bulte, Robert  Lensink and Daan Van Soest, 2012,  “Violent Conflict and Behavior ? Evidence from field experiments in Burundi”,  American Economic Review, April, Vol. 102, No. 2 pp. 941-64

Verwimp, Philip, 2012, “Undernutrition, subsequent risk of Mortality and Civil War in Burundi”, Economics and Human Biology, Vol. 10, Issue 3, pp. 221-231

Bundervoet, Tom, 2010, Assets, Activity Choices, and Civil War: Evidence from Burundi, World Development, 38, 7, 955-965

Akresh, Richard, Philip Verwimp and Tom Bundervoet, 2009, “Health and Civil War in Burundi”, Journal of Human Resources, vol.44, n.2, Spring, pp.536-563