News from 2012 

December 31, 2012 -
Slate

It’s not that the poor don’t think enough about money, it’s that they think about it too much. Slate discusses the research of J-PAL affiliate Sendhil Mullainathan.

December 28, 2012 -
Freakonomics

Examining some bad habits about charity giving might help make sure our dollars go farther this giving season.

December 24, 2012 -
The Atlantic

Esther Duflo discusses which is more effective in improving life for women: economic development or specific programs aimed at increasing equality?

December 22, 2012 -
The Washington Post

The work of J-PAL and IPA has shown that some interventions meant to reduce extreme poverty are extremely effective, while others have disappointing results.

December 21, 2012 -
The White House Press Office

President Barack Obama announced his intent to appoint J-PAL Director Esther Duflo to the President’s Global Development Council.

December 12, 2012 -
PopTech

J-PAL Affiliate Dean Karlan, spoke recently at the PopTech gathering of innovative thinkers.

December 7, 2012 -
The Washington Post

Rigorous ways to evaluate whether programs are working exist, but too often aren't employed. 

December 6, 2012 -
Tehelka

J-PAL Policy Manager discusses how the CAG paints a dismal picture of JNNURM’s achievements, but doesn’t recommend any solutions.

December 5, 2012 -
Financial Times

J-PAL Director Abhijit Banerjee explains why we need a world where less ingenuity is necessary to survive.

December 5, 2012 -
The New York Times

Whatever cause moves us, we should be looking for effectiveness; rigorous evaluation of social change programs can help determine the most effective charities. 

November 27, 2012 -
Indian Express

Recent research by the Rajasthan police, in collaboration with J-PAL at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, proves the benefits of dedicated police teams for traffic law enforcement on highways.

November 26, 2012 -
Development Policy Blog

It turns out that, instead of making optimal choices, often people living in poverty make mistakes.

November 22, 2012 -
The Boston Globe

An editorial piece in the Boston Globe hails J-PAL's contributions to anti-poverty efforts.

November 17, 2012 -
The Guardian

Before a series of documentaries under the banner Why Poverty? is released globally, the Guardian asks J-PAL Directors Abhijit Banerjee and Esther Duflo how they would alleviate the plight of the destitute.

November 15, 2012 -

Teaching at the Right Level | Improving Early Grade Reading in India through the Use of Evidence 

November 13, 2012 -
BBC News

The founder of J-PAL partner organization Pratham is this year's winner of one of the biggest awards in international education: the WISE prize. 

November 12, 2012 -
The Atlantic

J-PAL Affiliate Marco Gonzalez-Navarro discusses his recent study in Mexico and how paving streets can have a measurable effect on reducing urban poverty.

November 8, 2012 -
La Tercera

Chile needs to implement policies aimed at leveling the political playing field between men and women, but it is important to evaluate these policies to know if they are actually creating more equal systems.

November 6, 2012 -
La Croix

Abhijit Banerjee argues that, even in Europe, understanding the problems of those in poverty is important to design effective policies.

October 31, 2012 -
The Stone Family Foundation

Dispensers for Safe Water Initiative, a scale-up from a J-PAL project, has been awarded the Stone Prize for Innovation and Entrepreneurship in Water.

October 29, 2012 -
Micro Insurance Innovation Facility

Results from an experiment in Ghana reveal that rainfall insurance leads to significantly larger agricultural investment and riskier production choices by farmers.

October 25, 2012 -
UNDP

Abhijit Banerjee discusses Poor Economics, the roots of poverty, and effective policies of poverty reduction at the Kapuscinski development lecture in Brussels.

October 11, 2012 -
University of Michigan

J-PAL Affiliate Dean Yang discusses how fingerprinting can help encourage borrowers to repay their loans.

October 8, 2012 -
NBER

News coverage of the results of the Moving to Opportunity demonstration project

October 6, 2012 -
Marketplace

Is it bad decision making or is there something more behind it?

October 3, 2012 -
Yale University

Video: J-PAL Affiliate Dean Karlan is interviewed about his research in behavioral economics and his ideas to end global poverty. 

September 28, 2012 -
Institute for Government

A problem of supply or demand? A new report summarizes the outputs from a series of seminars held at the Institute for Government.

September 12, 2012 -
Turkish Weekly

Does providing households with training and capital to diversify income cushion shocks from severe weather?

August 31, 2012 -
First Post

Abhijit Banerjee discusses how microcredit could help the poor achieve their savings goals.

August 31, 2012 -
CGAP Microfinance Blog

J-PAL affiliate Dean Karlan tells of projects evaluated in Bangladesh, Pakistan, Honduras and India that have showed an impact on the livelihoods of the poorest that were targeted.

August 22, 2012 -

J-PAL's Urban Services Initiative (USI) | Matching Researchers and Policymakers | The Wall Street Journal: “A Visit to the Potty Lab”

August 17, 2012 -
Wired

Mushfiq Mobarak discusses how social engineering can be the chief factor of an intervention's success.

August 13, 2012 -
KQED

In a radio interview, Esther Duflo talks about the pitfalls of current international aid programs.

August 13, 2012 -
PLOS

J-PAL is at the forefront of a movement promoting the wider use of randomized evaluations, akin to those used in medicine, in the development of social policy.

August 3, 2012 -
Foreign Policy

The working paper Up in Smoke: The Influence of Household Behavior on the Long-Run Impact of Improved Cooking by J-PAL affiliates Rema Hanna, Esther Duflo, and Michael Greenstone is highlighted in Foreign Policy's quick look at transition policy research in progress.

July 31, 2012 -
The United Nations

J-PAL co-founder and director Abhijit Banerjee appointed to high-level UN panel on post-2015 development goals.

July 25, 2012 -
Hindustan Times

The broader point is not that the poor cannot adapt to to new technology, but that technology works best when it sits lightly on the lives of its users.

July 16, 2012 -

Rethinking Clean Cookstoves | Registration Open for Impact and Policy Conference

July 16, 2012 -
Ideas for India

J-PAL Affiliate Sandip Sukhtankar suggests new ways policymakers can test what works in the struggle against corruption.

July 13, 2012 -
The National

Initiatives such as MFIs work well when poor people get a sense of hope, says J-PAL Director Esther Duflo.

July 11, 2012 -
NPR

J-PAL Affiliate Edward Miguel discusses his work in Busia in an NPR interview about Africa's growing economies. 

July 5, 2012 -
The New York Times

The suffering associated with poverty is sometimes caused not only by low incomes but also by self-destructive pathologies; J-PAL Director Esther Duflo argues that outside interventions sometimes work partly when they give poor people hope. 

July 2, 2012 -
NPR

Despite decades of global efforts to replace dirty cookstoves with cleaner, greener cookstoves, 98 percent of the population in Bangladesh still uses traditional cookstoves, according to a recent study by Mushfiq Mobarak.

June 27, 2012 -
Daily Times, Pakistan

At an event focused on methods to provide low-cost, quality education for the poor of Pakistan, J-PAL Affiliate Asim Khwaja gave a key presentation entitled ‘Investing in the Education Market: Strengthening Private Schools for the Poor.’

June 26, 2012 -
Fast Co. Design

Powerful ideas can be as small as a sack of beans. 

June 26, 2012 -
Futurity

Pollution from traditional cookstoves leads to millions of deaths in developing countries, but few people buy safer stoves because models aren’t designed to give people what they want, researchers say.

June 24, 2012 -
Wall Street Journal

The Wall Street Journal reviews J-PAL Affiliate Mushfiq Mobarak's planned randomized control trial of Quicksand’s research on bathing and toilet use in India. 

June 20, 2012 -
National Geographic

Indoor air pollution is an avoidable scourge and one discouraging study should not set the world back in the effort to eradicate it.

June 15, 2012 -

Using Incentives to Increase Immunisation in India | J-PAL South Asia Launches M&E Webinar Series Under the CLEAR Initiative | J-PAL Executive Education Training, July 23-27, Delhi

June 15, 2012 -
Vision UC

Vision UC, the newsletter of the Catholic University of Chile, talked with Ryan Cooper, J-PAL LAC executive director, and Francisco Gallego, J-PAL LAC scientific director, about the work that J-PAL LAC is doing in the region. Cooper and Gallego explained the experimental methodology used by J-PAL by using as example an evaluation carried out in Chile which sought to determine whether education quality is affected if parents are given information about the schools in their neighborhoods. 

June 4, 2012 -
World Economic Forum

J-PAL Affiliate Dean Karlan spoke at the 2012 World Economic Forum on East Asia in Bangkok about what works and doesn’t work in fighting poverty.

May 21, 2012 -
Microlinks

Most people, regardless of age or socioeconomic status, find achieving financial goals for themselves and their families challenging and often don’t save as much as they’d like. These features are examples of commitment devices, or ways to help overcome competition from short-term demands on an individual’s long-term preferences (e.g. retirement savings).

May 18, 2012 -
Livemint

Indians do not give enough to charity, but the habit is growing among those who have been lucky enough to benefit from a dynamic economy. A little scientific inquiry can ensure that your charity can be effective.

May 16, 2012 -
The Christian Science Monitor

The prospect of long-term joblessness in Europe and the US should focus attention on a new type of economics that seems to work for helping the worst-off in poor countries.

May 16, 2012 -
Government of Ghana

Ghana is making investments in the provision of school infrastructure, free meals, exercise books and uniforms which have led to an increase in enrollment and access generally.

May 15, 2012 -

Launch of J-PAL South Asia Newsletter | 20 Million Children Dewormed in Bihar and Delhi

May 15, 2012 -
Huffington Post

Neglected Tropical Diseases (NTDs) are interrelated with existing global development challenges but the solution is readily at hand.

May 14, 2012 -
The Telegraph India

After receiving the Shera’s Shera at the STAR Ananda Shera Bangali Awards 2012, Abhijit Banerjee sat down with the Telegraph for an interview.

May 14, 2012 -
Copenhagen Consensus Center

The Copenhagen Consensus 2012 Expert Panel identifies the smartest ways to allocate money to respond to ten of the world’s biggest challenges.

May 13, 2012 -
Bloomberg

The purpose of randomized control trials is not to debunk the idea of helping poor countries. On the contrary, such work bolsters the case for aid by ensuring that dollars are well spent.

May 13, 2012 -
Diario La Tercera

Ryan Cooper, executive director of J-PAL Latin America, recommends Dean Karlan and Jacob Appel's book "More Than Good Intentions" to Chilean readers, highlighting the book's key points and emphasizing the importance of scientific evidence in policymaking.

May 12, 2012 -
Manila Bulletin

The Computer Access Mentorship Program (CAMP) is a step into the future for a program that has successfully served 882 public schools, 24,654 public school teachers, and a little over a million students, as well as distributed almost 204,000 children’s books over the course of 12 years.

May 11, 2012 -
The Economist

An absence of optimism may play a large role in keeping people trapped in poverty.

May 8, 2012 -
The Washington Post

It sounds too good to be true: If we could just swap out dirty indoor cooking stoves in the developing world with cleaner versions, we could cut pollution, save lives, and slow climate change. Promising, yes? But, like most things that sound too good to be true, it’s not that easy.

May 8, 2012 -
Council of Foreign Relations

J-PAL Affiliate Paul Niehaus discusses how a new NGO–enabled by the rapid spread of mobile technology–is experimenting with cash transfers to alleviate poverty.

May 4, 2012 -
The Economist

While the initiatives One Laptop Per Child and the Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves had disappointing results, one only has to look at the success of M-PESA, Kenya's mobile money platform, to appreciate the implications technology can have for development. 

May 2, 2012 -
The Wall Street Journal India

While the Right to Education Act is too recent to have spawned any scientific research, there is new evidence on how affirmative action can help undo stereotypes in another important arena, namely gender.

April 27, 2012 -
American Economic Association

J-PAL North America Scientific Director Amy Finkelstein is the 2012 recipient of the John Bates Clark
medal, awarded annually to the American economist who has made the most
significant contribution to economic thought and knowledge.

April 26, 2012 -
UC Berkeley

J-PAL Affiliate Edward Miguel is among five Berkeley faculty that are being lauded this week, not only for their particular and highly developed expertise but for their exceptional ability to challenge and engage their students.

April 23, 2012 -
The New York Times

In a working paper released this month, Rema Hanna, Esther Duflo and Michael Greenstone report the results of a randomized controlled trial on the adoption of clean stoves in India.

April 22, 2012 -
The Guardian

Abhijit Banerjee talks to The Guardian about why aid that assumes the poor will do the right thing is misguided, and why political corruption does not necessarily mean economic stagnation.

April 20, 2012 -
The Boston Globe

New research from a J-PAL study shows that the clean cookstoves can have little long-run impact on air quality or health because they are underused and often break.

April 18, 2012 -
Center for Global Development

A J-PAL study shows that a lot more research and experimentation is needed to better understand the barriers of improved cookstove adoption before the roll out of another large-scale cookstove delivery program to reduce indoor air pollution. 

April 17, 2012 -
World Bank Blogs

World Bank development economist Markus Goldstein analyzes the J-PAL study on police performance and public perception in Rajasthan, India.

April 16, 2012 -
The Washington Post

The World Health Organization estimates that indoor air pollution kills 2 million people every year, but a J-PAL study suggests the replacement stoves may not make any difference.

April 16, 2012 -
Worldview WBEZ Chicago

GiveDirectly is a non-profit that uses text messages to make direct cash transfers to impoverished people in Kenya. Worldview talks to J-PAL affiliate Paul Niehaus, one of the organization's founders, about the concept behind this new form of aid money.

April 12, 2012 -
NPR

Chlorine dispensers become a simple yet crucial solution to provide clean water in Haiti during a Cholera outbreak. 

April 10, 2012 -
The Hindu Business Line

J-PAL affiliates Sandip Sukhtankar, Karthik Muralidharan, and Paul Niehaus are conducting a randomized control trial to determine the effect of Smartcards on MGNREGA payments in Andhra Pradesh, with full support from the state government.

April 4, 2012 -
The New York Times

This January in Davos, Prime Minister Odinga of Kenya promised to deworm five million children annually until 2017, Bihar is readying for the second round of deworming this May, and Delhi has pledged another deworming day this summer.

April 4, 2012 -
Chicago Policy Review

Rachel Glennerster, J-PAL Executive Director, and Iqbal Dhaliwal, Director of Policy, discuss the need for and challenges of randomized evaluations, the organization's policy outreach efforts, and J-PAL's Governance Initiative.

March 28, 2012 -
The Wall Street Journal Blog

Abhijit Banerjee and Esther Duflo document in their book “Poor Economics” that when poor households get some extra money to spend, they might not spend it on food or sanitation, but instead splurge on a television set or a lavish wedding celebration.

March 28, 2012 -
The Atlantic

Esther Duflo speaks on the virtues and limitations of a data-driven approach to healing the world's most intractable problems.

March 27, 2012 -
The Guardian

Abhijit Banerjee discusses development goals for global poverty in a podcast recorded at The Guardian's Open weekend.

March 27, 2012 -
World Economic Forum Blog

Deworm the World, a Young Global Leaders initiative, plays a key role in initiating and sustaining school-based deworming programs by providing technical assistance to governments, including Delhi, Bihar and Kenya.

March 26, 2012 -
Forbes India Magazine

Dean Karlan describes how the first wave of randomized controlled trials in microfinance helped figure out the impact on everybody who received the treatment. What has started to come out is a more complex story.

March 26, 2012 -
Business Standard

Citing early research by Abhijit Banerjee, N Chandra Mohan argues that inequality in India is worsening and following the U.S. pattern.

March 21, 2012 -
The New York Times

Abhijit Banerjee argues that we need two different poverty lines: an ethical poverty line to describe the standard we should aspire to and an administrative poverty line, which tells us how to best target our limited resources.

March 16, 2012 -
Ghana Business News

World Bank economist discusses the merits of Tavneet Suri's mobile banking research in Kenya.

March 16, 2012 -
Fort Wayne Journal Gazette

Citing research from Dean Karlan and Jonathan Zinman, the article suggests that microlending should be targeted for startup investments and training that can build durable financial institutions.

March 13, 2012 -
NPR

According to Abhijit Banerjee and Esther Duflo, the same teachers in an Indian experiment who proved atrocious at providing an education during the semester in public schools turned out to be very effective at teaching literacy in summer camps.

March 12, 2012 -
The Hindu

Development economists, including Abhijit Banerjee and Rohini Pande, write an open letter to the Prime Minister of India proposing a simpler and more effective framework for the National Food Security Bill.

March 7, 2012 -
The Wall Street Journal India

Abhijit Banerjee and Rohini Pande show there’s been an increase in Uttar Pradesh over time of what they term “voter ethnicization,” which they show has a direct impact on the quality of legislators.

March 5, 2012 -
Council of Foreign Relations

Quality matters as much as quantity in expanding financial services to the poor, suggests a paper from J-PAL Affiliate Pascaline Dupas.

February 28, 2012 -
World Bank Blogs

One thing that is clear is that we can no longer ignore costs when analyzing impact, unless we are content with assuming a world with no budget constraints or opportunity costs.

February 27, 2012 -
World Bank Blogs
Suggestions for what ordinary people living in rich countries can do to help poor people living in developing countries.
February 27, 2012 -
Slate Magazine

Technologies exist that would ensure universal access to mobile technologies at prices vastly more accessible to those living in poverty than what is currently on offer.

February 27, 2012 -
The Global Citizen

The Global Citizen interviews J-PAL's Director of Policy, Iqbal Dhaliwal, about J-PAL's many challenges and achievements.

February 27, 2012 -
Michael & Susan Dell Foundation

The benefits of deworming are proven, and the Delhi government – together with Deworm the World – has successfully modelled the implementation methodology for mass, school-based, urban health interventions.

February 23, 2012 -
Haaretz

The poor aren't less able, they're distracted. Privileged people subjected to the same conditions would also make bad decisions.

February 20, 2012 -
BBC News

A campaign has been launched to deworm millions of children in the Indian capital, Delhi. The campaign, launched in collaboration with J-PAL Partner Deworm the World, follows a study that shows that 16% children in Delhi are infected by worms.

February 18, 2012 -
Diario La Tercera

Francisco Gallego and Cristobal Marshall - motivated by a recent announcement that the Chilean government will start announcing cases of corruption under investigation - explain the positive impact that the availability of information can have on governance issues.

February 18, 2012 -
Mujer Hoy

Mujer Hoy, a Spanish magazine, talks with Esther Duflo about her book 'Poor Economics' and how J-PAL works to find effective solutions in the fight against poverty.

February 16, 2012 -
The Guardian

J-PAL Director Rachel Glennerster explains why proper evaluation of policy is crucial at the the Institute for Government. 

February 13, 2012 -
MIT Open Courseware

Material from J-PAL's 2011 Executive Education course is now available on MIT Open Courseware.

February 13, 2012 -
la-Croix

An economist specializing in questions of poverty and development, Esther Duflo invites us to change our perspective on the poorest of the poor, and consider a form of enlightened paternalism.

February 12, 2012 -
Times of India

Women politicians highly influence the career aspirations of teenage girls and positively impact their educational achievements.

February 9, 2012 -
Télérama

Despite the efforts of the UN, a large proportion of the world's population remains desperately poor. According to Esther Duflo and Martin Hirsch, it is time to find new weapons to tackle this scourge.

February 9, 2012 -
Le Point

The situation of the middle class is the subject of a new book by J-PAL affiliate Eric Maurin.

February 1, 2012 -
Foreign Policy

Small loans probably won't lift people out of poverty or empower women. But that doesn't mean they're useless.

February 1, 2012 -
Qn

New research is debunking myths about microfinance and showing how organizations can effectively address problems associated with poverty.

January 31, 2012 -
WBEZ

When it comes to global poverty, there’s often a gap between the billions we pour in and the outcomes that actually result; Dean Karlan is trying to uncover the reasons behind this gap.

January 29, 2012 -
Ghana Business News

Kenya launched the second phase of its national deworming programme at the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting 2012, aiming to treat 5 million children annually for the next five years.

January 29, 2012 -
Diario La Tercera

Francisco Gallego, scientific director of J-PAL Latin America, recommends Poor Economics to Chilean readers, highlighting the book's key points and explaining the book's importance in the Chilean context. 

January 27, 2012 -
World Economic Forum

Deworm the World will be featured on Friday the 27th of January at a World Economic Forum event in Davos. This press conference will feature exciting new commitments from partners to improve the lives of millions of children through school-based deworming.

Watch the live stream at the World Economic Forum at 1pm CET / 12pm GMT/ 7am EST at http://wef.ch/live.

A YGL Initiative: Deworm the World
Friday 27 January 13:00 - 13:30 CET
Congress Centre, Press Conference Room

January 26, 2012 -
Channel 4 News

The real influence of the Gates Foundation isn't so much the actual amount of cash that it hands out–though considerable–but that they base philanthropy on the most cost-effective, proven solutions.

January 26, 2012 -
la-Croix

Esther Duflo and Abhijit Banerjee have written an essential and stimulating book about the fight against poverty.

January 26, 2012 -
The Financial Times

While some dismiss the quota system as one that clashes with the ideals of the democratic process, there is evidence that these laws help create female role models, and improve educational and professional opportunities for young women.

January 26, 2012 -
The Globe and Mail

It took much longer than expected, but women, especially those from the Dalit or “untouchable” community, were able slowly to use the affirmative action quotas to attain power that would once have been unthinkable.

January 25, 2012 -
AllAfrica.com

Why small increases in price can lead to a steep decline in demand for essential health products.

January 25, 2012 -
Europe1

A new book by J-PAL affiliate Eric Maurin discusses the occupations, wages, and voting patterns of the middle class in France.

January 24, 2012 -
Wired UK

J-PAL affiliate Sendhil Mullainathan is honored in Wired UK's magazine as one of 50 people who will change the world.

January 23, 2012 -
The Global Journal

J-PAL partner Innovations for Poverty Action named top 100 best NGOs.

January 22, 2012 -
La Tercera

Ryan Cooper, executive director of J-PAL Latin America and the Carribean, and Francisco Gallego, scientific director, discuss the current projects of J-PAL LAC as well as its direction for the future in the region.

January 19, 2012 -
YouPhil

The failure of so many policies to fight poverty can make some people want to throw in the towel, but Esther Duflo and Abhijit Banerjee are showing that the problems of poverty is not insurmountable.

January 16, 2012 -
Les Echos

An extract from the newly released book "Repenser la pauvreté"
is featured on Les Echos.

January 14, 2012 -
Inter

Eric Maurin, author of "The New Middle Class", is featured on the radio show "On n’arrête pas l’éco".

January 12, 2012 -
Science Magazine

A paper by Lori Beaman, Esther Duflo, Rohini Pande, and Petia Topalova shows that female leadership influences adolescent girls' career aspirations and educational attainment. Article includes a podcast interview with Lori Beaman.

January 12, 2012 -
Le Monde

In their new book, "The New Middle Class", Eric Maurin and Dominique Goux, discuss the changing situation of the middle class in France.

January 12, 2012 -
Le Monde

The fate of the middle class is a very sensitive subject in France.

January 7, 2012 -
First Post, India

India’s education system is undermining India’s legitimate aspirations to be at the global forefront as a prosperous economy, as a global great power, as an emulated polity, and as a fair and just society. As the beginning ends, the question now is: what is to be done?

January 6, 2012 -
Libération

In Esther Duflo and Abhijit Banerjee's new book "Repenser la pauvreté", the renowned economists argue that economics can benefit from concrete facts based on field experiments.

January 5, 2012 -
The New York Times

The lower house of the Indian Parliament, almost 90 percent male in its composition, had ensured that a bill intended to increase the number of female members would not be passed for at least another year.

January 2, 2012 -
Foreign Policy

A little more concrete could save the world. Separate studies by J-PAL affiliates Paul Gertler and Marco Gonzalez-Navarro reveal the various benefits of concrete.

January 1, 2012 -
France Culture

Esther Duflo discusses Poor Economics on La Suite Dans les Idées.