Experimenting for a Better Future: Drawing Policy Lessons from Randomised Evaluations

Classroom F, Mwalimu House Wits School of Governance, 2 St David’s Place, Parktown

The policymaking landscape is flooded with ‘great ideas’ for tackling social policy problems, competing for financing and buy-in, despite often limited evidence of their effectiveness. As with clinical trials for medicine, randomised evaluations of development policies can provide a scientific and unbiased way to measure these policies’ impacts across multiple dimensions on people’s lives.

Dr Glennerster will discuss examples of randomised evaluations from around the world including measuring the impacts of a social housing programme in the USA, a recruitment intervention found to attract more productive community health workers in Zambia and a new study testing the impact of hotspot policing and municipal clean-ups on crime reduction in Colombia. The J-PAL Africa team will detail work being done in South Africa covering studies on youth employment, prepaid electricity meters and encouraging political participation among youth. The session will include time for discussion. Time: 14:00 – 16:00. Followed by snacks. RSVP by 8 March: [email protected]