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News, ideas, and analysis from J-PAL staff and affiliated professors. Subscribe to our newsletter to receive monthly email updates.

A group of people participating in an impact evaluation training discuss lessons while sitting at a table.

J-PAL South Asia launches Indian Scholars Program to strengthen ties with India-based researchers

J-PAL South Asia’s new Indian Scholars Program (ISP) will provide research funding, training, and networking opportunities for researchers and academics in India to further expand its network of researchers leading rigorous, policy-relevant randomized evaluations in the country.
Women in Debanandapur, West Bengal, India sitting on the ground while sewing and ironing garments.

Training gender practitioners in South Asia in strategies to measure gender outcomes

The Centers for Learning on Evaluation and Results, hosted at J-PAL South Asia, conducted a five-day online workshop on Applying a Gender Lens to Program Evaluation in February 2021. This workshop covered content on the measurement of gender outcomes, such as gender norms, agency, attitudes...
A woman sits at a desk with a notepad and laptop computer.

Breaking down the gender gap in the DEDP MicroMasters Program

Despite the MicroMasters' broad access and reduced barriers to entry, women enroll in the program at half the rate of men. Conditional on enrolling, women are also less likely to complete the MicroMasters program than men. The difference in enrollment prompted us to take a deeper look into where...
A Zoom screenshot of 12 people, including students and program staff

The Data, Economics, and Development Policy master’s: Learning and connecting at MIT during Covid-19

We welcomed the second cohort of the Data, Economics, and Development Policy (DEDP) master’s program to campus in January. The students will earn their master’s degree in just eight months under a hybrid online and in-person model that allows the cohort to build community at MIT while accommodating...
Two people sitting at a desk, observing a lecturer.

Expanding access to higher education through the DEDP MicroMasters

Since its inception in 2017, MIT and J-PAL’s online MicroMasters in Data, Economics, and Development Policy (DEDP) has engaged thousands of learners from over 210 countries. As the number of DEDP learners grows, J-PAL is engaging with universities to provide learners with more ways to benefit from...
Two women gather around a computer on which an online course is displayed.

Building personal connection in an online learning community

J-PAL Africa learned from focus groups in Ghana that lack of local connection and learning with peers is one of the biggest challenges experienced by students in the online MicroMasters in Data, Economics, and Development Policy. As a response, J-PAL Africa developed a course representative system...
A group of DEDP master's students stand behind a table in an MIT classroom.

Celebrating our first graduates in the Data, Economics, and Development Policy master’s program

In January 2020, 22 students from across the world joined us on MIT’s campus as the first cohort in the master’s program in Data, Economics, and Development Policy (DEDP). Developed by MIT’s Department of Economics and J-PAL, the program represents a new approach to higher education by combining...
Two women gather around a computer on which an online course is displayed.

How to keep students engaged in online learning

Transitioning from a classroom to an online video conference is challenging for everyone involved—teachers must make extra effort to engage students effectively, and students in turn have to make an extra effort to stay engaged amid distractions at home. Research suggests that students typically do...