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EvaluationsPolicy Publications

Search our database of policy briefcases and bulletins. Briefcases summarize the results and policy recommendations from one randomized evaluation, while bulletins synthesize the broader policy lessons emerging from multiple evaluations on the same topic.

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Political Economy & Governance

Smartcards for Smarter Payments

Karthik Muralidharan, Paul Niehaus, Sandip Sukhtankar

In India, a biometrically authenticated payment system reduced corruption and substantially improved the delivery of government social assistance programs despite partial implementation.

Shopkeeper writes a receipt

Political Economy & Governance

The Role of the VAT for Tax Enforcement

Dina Pomeranz

The Value Added Tax (VAT) system, which generates a paper trail on transactions between firms, facilitated tax enforcement by spreading the impact of enforcement measures up the production chain in a study with over 400,000 firms in Chile.

Political Economy & Governance

Pave The Way

Marco Gonzalez-Navarro

Paving streets in marginalized neighborhoods in Mexico increased property values, allowing households to purchase more home appliances and vehicles and to invest more in home improvements.
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Political Economy & Governance

Identifying the Poor Through Self-Targeting

Abhijit Banerjee, Rema Hanna, Benjamin Olken

Requiring households to apply for a cash transfer program in Indonesia discouraged rich households from seeking out benefits and identified a relatively poorer group of beneficiaries.

Political Economy & Governance

Paying for Performance

Benjamin Olken, Asim Khwaja

Performance pay for tax officials in Punjab, Pakistan significantly increased tax revenues without harming taxpayer satisfaction.

Political Economy & Governance, Health

The Power of Information in Community Monitoring

Jakob Svensson, Martina Björkman Nyqvist

A community-based monitoring program in Uganda led to large and sustained increases in health care utilization and improvements in child health. The key to success was providing communities with information on the performance of local health care providers.

Education, Health, Political Economy & Governance

Community Grants for the Next Generation

Benjamin Olken

Community block grants improved health and education in Indonesian villages, and adding performance incentives sped up improvements in health.

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