News and Announcements

  • The Economist on Karlan cows paper

    Oct 16/13 | From the newsroom | 
    The Economist again discusses research by IPA founder and President Dean Karlan, along with Santosh Anagol and Alvin Etang, on why the poor in India might own cows, despite it being a costly investment. The Economist Explains column is here.
  • IPA’s financial education work in The New York Times

    Oct 10/13 | From the newsroom | 


    New York Times

    In a column for the New York Times' Economic View section, Booth School of Business professor Richard Thaler discusses various approaches to financial literacy. He talks about an IPA study in the Dominican Republic by Alejandro Drexler, Greg Fischer, and Antoinette Fischer, which found that teaching entrepreneurs simple rules of thumb was more effective at improving business outcomes and accounting practices than an accounting course was. Read the full article in the New York Times here.

  • Dean Karlan research in The Economist

    Oct 03/13 | From the newsroom | 
    This week’s issue of The Economist features research by IPA founder and President Dean Karlan on why poor people in India would own cows, which turn out to be so expensive to maintain that they lose money. The piece compares it to commitment savings, a strategy people can use to keep their money tied up and out of reach. Read the full article here
  • World Bank Blog on Policies for Promoting Entrepreneurship

    Morten Seja writes about affiliate Antoinette Schoar’s recent talk at the World Bank, discussing the importance of differentiating subsistence from transformational entrepreneurs in thinking about about policy design for developing countries. Targeting the right kinds of policies to the right kind of entrepreneurs is a crucial topic for IPA’s Small and Medium Enterprise Initiative. You can read the full summary of the talk here.

  • IPA Malawi country director interviewed in Business Times

    Sep 29/13 | From the newsroom | 
    IPA’s country director in Malawi, Thomas Chataghalala Munthali, had a full page interview in the Business Times . He discussed what we’ve learned from our work there, what IPA and J-PAL are doing to influence policy, and his vision for IPA’s future in the country. Read the full interview here (PDF format).
  • Leader-Post On Downloads for Deworming

    Sep 22/13 | From the newsroom | Leader-Post
    Canada’s Regina Leader-Post has an article about songwriter & musician Josh Gonzales, who is dedicating all of the profits from downloads of his new song Young As I’ll Ever Be, to IPA’s school-based deworming efforts, which are now managed through Evidence Action. The article is here, the song, which he hopes will get 497,000 downloads by April 2014, is available for listening or download at
  • IPA at Alliance for Financial Inclusion’s Global Policy Forum

    Sep 12/13 | From the newsroom | 
    Aishwarya Ratan, Director of IPA’s Global Financial Inclusion Initiative joined luminaries such as Bill Gates, Dr. Zeti Akhtar Aziz, Governor at Bank Negara Malaysia, Princess Maxima of the Netherlands and others at the AFI Global Policy Forum 2013 in Kuala Lumpur. A video of her panel covering the impact of financial inclusion on poverty alleviation can be viewed below or here.

  • IPA’s Busara Center in Nautilus Magazine

    Sep 11/13 | From the newsroom | 
    Nautilus Magazine
    The science magazine Nautilus profiles IPA’s Busara Center for Behavioral Economics in Nairobi, Kenya. Researchers there are trying to combat Western bias in the field of experimental and behavioral economics by including participants from the developing world. You can read the whole story, including one local participant’s strategy, here.
  • IPA's cash transfer work in New York Times Fixes column

    Aug 28/13 | From the newsroom | 

    New York Times

    The New York Times Fixes column discusses cash transfer research, including quotes from IPA's Director of Research Methods and Training, Niall Keleher, and IPA affiliate Chris Blattman who discusses his work with IPA in Uganda (here and here). The article also discusses our evaluation of GiveDirectly, and our new results from Morocco. You can also find a blog post about recent cash transfer coverage here.

  • Innovations for Poverty Action Announces Launch of Evidence Action to Bring Evidence-Based Solutions to Scale

    Aug 22/13 | Announcement | 
    For Immediate Release
    NEW HAVEN, CT – Innovations for Poverty Action (IPA) is pleased to announce the launch of a new organization created with IPA’s support and dedicated to taking cost-effective programs to scale to improve the lives of millions in Africa and Asia. Evidence Action has been created to bridge the gap between evidence about what works to alleviate poverty around the world and what is actually implemented. The organization scales interventions based on rigorous evidence and crafts resilient business models for long run success.
    Two IPA initiatives that touch millions of people in Africa and Asia – Dispensers for Safe Water and the Deworm the World Initiative – will spin off from IPA to be managed by Evidence Action. Dispensers for Safe Water is an entrepreneurial program scaling the chlorine dispenser system. This innovation is based on research that showed that installing chlorine dispensers next to community water sources made treating water easy, which increased usage of chlorine six-fold, providing a very low-cost strategy to get millions of people drinking safe water.  This year the program will reach over one million people in Africa. The Deworm the World Initiative actively supports the scale-up of school-based deworming programs worldwide to free children of intestinal worms. Not only has this been shown to be one of the most cost-effective ways to improve attendance in school, children in school-based deworming programs also have higher incomes a decade later. The Deworm the World Initiative has reached more than 40 million children by partnering with governments to support their work, ensuring integration with other health and education initiatives and long-run financial sustainability for school-based deworming programs.
    While IPA will continue to operate and provide support for both of these programs throughout the transition period, the management and strategic planning of this work are transitioning to Evidence Action. Both organizations will continue to work closely together after the transition is complete.
    “The launch and success of Evidence Action is central to IPA's overall strategic vision,” said Annie Duflo, Executive Director of IPA. “IPA’s vision is that evidence of what works translates to large-scale impact in practice. The creation of Evidence Action provides an exciting new path to take demonstrated ideas to the next stage of expansion, while allowing IPA to focus on designing and evaluating innovative solutions, and on mobilizing and supporting other organizations to use and apply this knowledge.”
    “We are excited about the impact our collaboration will have on poverty alleviation around the world.”  Alix Zwane, Evidence Action’s new Executive Director who joined from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, adds: “The vision for Evidence Action is to take evidence-based interventions to scale. We identify innovative, appropriate financing mechanisms and build best practice operational models to cost-effectively impact millions of people.” Evidence Action will also benefit IPA's research by sharing lessons learned that can help research projects anticipate and plan for scale from the start.
    For more information on the new collaboration click here.
    About Innovations for Poverty Action
    Innovations for Poverty Action (IPA) is dedicated to discovering what works to help the world’s poor. Established in 2002, IPA designs and evaluates programs in real contexts with real people, and provides hands-on assistance to bring successful programs to scale. IPA partners with researchers in top universities and implementing organizations around the world to ensure that poverty-fighting activities are supported by rigorous evaluation. IPA shares the evidence generated with development practitioners, policymakers and donors, and provides technical assistance and support to governments and non-governmental actors to implement successful programs and bring them to scale around the world. IPA has ongoing research operations in 51 countries across Africa; North and South America; and South and South East Asia. Additional information can be found at
    About Evidence Action
    Evidence Action scales proven development interventions and crafts resilient business models for long run success. Evidence Action is committed to only scale interventions whose efficacy is backed by substantial rigorous evidence, and to target cost-effective interventions that can potentially improve the lives of millions. IPA has supported the creation of Evidence Action, and the two organizations will continue to work together closely to ensure that rigorous evidence is used in the most effective way to impact the lives of the vulnerable around the world. Additional information can be found at
    Contact: Jeffrey Mosenkis
    Innovations for Poverty Action
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