Seasonal fluctuations in crop prices can have direct impacts on farmers’ earnings and savings. Crop prices are often lowest right after harvest, increasing substantially in the months afterwards, but farmers are not always able to take advantage of these price changes.
The composition of peer groups is thought to impact productivity and academic achievement. Researchers evaluated the impact of creating peer groups optimized to improve the academic achievement of lower-ability first-year students at the United States Air Force Academy.
Without special attention to creating economic opportunities for ex-combatants, they may be more likely to join rebellious groups, commit crime, and otherwise threaten political stability. In Liberia, researchers tested the effect of an intensive agricultural training program on employment activities, income, and socio-political integration.
David Atkin, Azam Chaudhry, Eric Verhoogen, Shamyla Chaudry, Amit Khandelwal
Businesses may be slow to adopt a new technology even when it offers clear benefits. Researchers introduced a new fabric cutting technology to a randomly selected group of soccer ball manufacturers in Pakistan, but very few firms adopted it.
This evaluation measured the determinants of insurance enrollment as well as the impacts of having insurance for informal sector workers by randomly varying the costs and convenience of signing up for a government health insurance program available to formal and informal sector workers in Nicaragua. Overall, take-up of the insurance and retention rates were low, and enrolling in the program did...
This evaluation studied the influence of information and social networks on university employees' decisions to enroll in a voluntary Tax Deferred Account (TDA) retirement plan in the United States. The results indicated that an individual’s decision to participate in the TDA is affected by small changes in their environment (i.e. in their social network), and not only by receiving increased...
In Vadodora, India, researchers studied the impact of supplementing classroom instruction with computer-assisted learning (CAL) in primary schools. CAL significantly improved student’s math scores, but was less cost-effective than the remedial tutor-based program, Balsakhi.
In this study, researchers randomly selected existing group-lending centers to convert to an individual liability model. They found no difference in repayment rates between individuals assigned individual liability and those assigned group liability, no change in overall profitability for the bank, and a reduction in voluntary savings for those removed from joint liability.
Dean Karlan, Markus Mobius, Tanya Rosenblat, Adam Szeidl
In collaboration with PRISMA, a Peruvian NGO offering credit through village banks, researchers designed and implemented a new loan product, which required new clients to be sponsored by existing clients, to measure the relative importance of social networks and prices for borrowing in shantytowns near Lima. Results demonstrated that borrowers were more likely to obtain sponsorship from friends....